Farmers Push for reintroduction of Victoria Potato Variety

1156 Views Kabale, Western Region, Uganda

In short
ate Ainembabazi, a farmer in Bubaare Sub County, says that the Victoria Irish potato variety should have been preserved well and made accessible to farmers since it is high yielding. She wants researchers to educate them on how best it can be reintroduced in their gardens.

Farmers in Kabale are pushing for the reintroduction and improvement of the traditional Victoria Irish potato variety. The species, whose production is almost disappearing, was treasured by farmers for being high yielding and doing well in upland areas. According to the farmers, although the Victoria Irish potato variety was prune to diseases, it was profitable.
 
Now, farmers want the National Agricultural Research Centre to conduct research into the variety, make it resistant to disease and reintroduce it. Kate Ainembabazi, a farmer in Bubaare Sub County, says that the Victoria Irish potato variety should have been preserved well and made accessible to farmers since it is high yielding.
 
She wants researchers to educate them on how best it can be reintroduced in their gardens.  60-year-old Juma Ahmed, a resident of Kyanamira has been growing Irish potatoes for the last 20 years.  According to Ahmed, the Victoria Irish potato variety is good for low income earners, saying it must be saved by researchers.
 
He says unless there is immediate intervention this particular Irish potato variety may become extinct. Edison Hillman, the Kabale District Agricultural Officer has confirmed receiving demands from farmers to reintroduce the Victoria Irish potato variety.
 
According to Hillman, the district production department has been liaising with the Zonal Agricultural Research Development Institute at Kacwekano to improve the variety to make it disease resistant. Alex Barekye, the director at Kacwekano Zonal Agricultural Research Development Institute says they are already working to improve the variety. He says preliminary results shows that once improved, Victoria Irish potato variety will perform better.
 
 
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About the author

Anthony Kushaba
For Anthony Kushaba, journalism is not just a job; it is a calling. Kushaba believes journalism is one of the few platforms where the views of the oppressed and margainalised can be heard. This is what his journalism aims to do: bring to light untold stories.

Kushaba is the Mbarara region URN bureau chief. Mitooma, Ntungamo, Bushenyi, Sheema, Isingiro, and Kiruhura districts fall under his docket. Kushaba has been a URN staff member since 2012.

Kushaba is a journalism graduate from Uganda Christian University Study Centre at Bishop Barham College in Kabale. Before joining URN, Kushaba worked with Voice of Kigezi (2008), Bushenyi FM (2010) and later on to Voice of Muhabura.

Kushaba's journalism interests centre on conflict, peace and electoral reporting. Kushaba occasionally writes on tourism, health, religion and education. He describes himself as highly driven and will pursue a tip until it yields a story.