NAEB roots for more investors to boost Macadamia production

The National Agriculture Export Board (NAEB) has started a campaign to attract more investors into macadamia farming to help boost exports.

This move is expected to help boost production of the crop and its export volumes.

According to François Muhizi, the in charge of Horticulture at NAEB, the crop contributes almost 10 percent to the agricultural export base and therefore more resources towards increasing production puts Rwanda in a better position in terms of competitiveness.

“We are therefore encouraging the private sector to take the lead and invest in this high value crop,” he noted.

There are currently about 300,000 macadamia trees in the country and the plan is to increase the number by at least 100,000 trees of macadamia annually.

Shortage of seedlings

Meanwhile, farmers have complained of shortage of macadamia seedlings which stifles efforts to produce the crop on a large scale.

Xavier Baributsa, a Macadamia farmer in Nyakariro sector in Rwamagana District said government should give farmers seedlings to boost production.

The macadamia expert urged NAEB to sensitize farmers about the crop saying many don’t know much about the high value crop.

Last year, the National Agricultural Export Board (NAEB) signed a partnership deal with Farm Gate East Africa Limited, a Kenyan company to promote production of macadamia and its exports.

Amb George William Kayonga, the NAEB chief executive officer, said at the time that the firm will support planting of one million macadamia trees across the country in the next 10 years to increase production.

“Already 200 hectares of consolidated land have been identified in Nyanza District, where the project is expected to be kick-started before it is rolled out to other parts of the country,” Kayonga said.