Maize imports to reduce

With some maize to feed the local population being imported from Tanzania and Uganda, the government of Rwanda says this year more maize is to be produced locally.

With some maize to feed the local population being imported from Tanzania and Uganda, the government of Rwanda says this year more maize is to be produced locally.

The government targets to produce 103,000 tonnes of maize this year, up from 102,447 tonnes produced the previous year.

With improved seeds and the introduction of fertilisers, the minister of agriculture and animal resources Anastase Murekezi is sure that there will be a corresponding increase in both quantity and quality of maize.

The minister was addressing a meeting of agricultural leaders at Hotel Novotel yesterday. The meeting was called to set targets and map-out strategies of improving the agriculture and dairy sectors in the country.

Government has embarked on distributing quality maize seeds and ferlisers to maize farmers countrywide, in its campaign to boost household incomes ensure Rwandans have enough food. If this target is achieved, according to the minister, there will be enough maize to feed both the local and international markets.

The United Nations’ World Food programme depends on supplies from Uganda to stock their warehouses and latter feed refugees in Rwanda.

Diary

Murekezi said the Nyagatare dairy plant is expected to be opened in May, and that the ministry has plans of providing at least a cooler in every sector to improve the storage and handling of milk

"Milk production capacity in all provinces is increasing. We therefore want to support both farmers and dealers, in this industry in all parts of the country," the minister said.

He called upon the participants to be on alert, incase, unfamiliar diseases break out in the country

"These outbreaks destabilise the targets there by creating a discrepancy between targets and out comes," he added.

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