Agricultural Technology Transfer (AgriTT) Cassava Value Chain Development Project

Donor: DFID-UK and Chinese Government

Duration: March 2013 – 2017

Introduction. The Agricultural Technology Transfer (AgriTT) Cassava Value Chain Development Project is one of the first trilateral cooperation project through which the Government of the Republic of Uganda (GoU), Department for Foreign and International Development (DFID), United Kingdom (UK), and the Government of the People’s Republic of China through Ministry of Agriculture are jointly supporting the development of cassava production, productivity and value addition in 4 districts in Mid-Western Uganda. The programme brings development practice and research expertise together to improve food security through technology transfer and knowledge sharing. There were two components: (1) the focused research component and the (2) Pilot development component.

The expected impact of the Uganda Pilot Development Project is, “to contribute to enhanced agricultural productivity contributing to improved food security among low income farmers in Uganda”. The outcome that the AgriTT Uganda PDP seeks to achieve is, “improved productivity of fresh cassava and increased availability of high quality cassava products in the country”.  The project addressed three main areas: cassava production; cassava processing; and cassava value addition.

Component 1. The focused research project.

The focused research project was designed to provide research support to the PDP.  The rationale behind the PDP and this project was the Government of Uganda’s aim to commercialize cassava, by establishing a strong raw material supply base, processing industries and a well-developed market for end-products.  The project had the following broad objectives:

  • To identify potential technologies from China and assess the feasibility of introducing and adapting them to socio-economic and cultural situations in the pilot areas of Uganda that will support cassava value chains development.
  • To assess the feasibility of introducing Chinese technologies in Uganda, specifically drying.

The project was implemented by teams of Chinese, Ugandan and UK scientists with complementary expertise who:

  • scoped technologies and for cassava production and processing for adaptation from China to Uganda.
  • made assessments of the feasibility of adapting the technologies to the situation in Uganda through field work in Uganda; and
  • provided technical support of the procurement of processing technologies, specifically bin drying.

Achievements realized;

Output 1 Lessons learned on the adaption of Chinese technologies for cassava production and processing to local situation in Uganda.

Output 2 Robust evidence available supporting the contribution of Chinese production and processing technologies to food security, poverty reduction and gender roles in the PDP in Uganda

Output 3 Information provided supporting decision to purchase bin drying technology (and other technologies) by PDP

Output 4 Dissemination of lessons learned from the research project and PDP to a wider audience.

Component 2. The Pilot Development Project (PDP)

The objectives of the component were to:

a)       Create a production base with Chinese Technical Assistance demonstrating best agronomic practices, and the establishment of a seed system;

b)       Pilot processing cassava to produce High Quality Cassava Chips (HQCC) and HQCF;

c)       To develop cassava-based food product(s) for the domestic and regional markets using Chinese Expertise (Technical Assistance).

Output 1 Production

  • The project successfully established over 200 hectares of cassava Mother Gardens (MGs) improved cassava varieties across the four AgriTT districts of Kiryandongo, Masindi, Hoima and Buliisa.
  • A cassava ridger, planter, plough, tiller and harvester were delivered and successfully evaluated and adapted for use in Kiryandongo for mechanized cassava demonstration.
  • Uganda scientists undertook three scoping studies in China to understand the cassava producing systems, production and processing technologies in China.  Their findings informed selection of production and processing equipment that are appropriate for Uganda’s small holder based production systems.

Output 2 Processing

  • Farmer business trainings were completed in all four project regions. Over 1,500 farmers benefited.
  • In fulfilment of the identification of the appropriate HQCF processing model and equipment;
  • selection was completed of suitable production and processing machinery;
  • business plans for Private Public Partnership model in mechanized cassava production and processing have been developed and core investors identified;
  • Economic justification for machinery procurement was also completed.
  • A feasibility study on large scale cassava industrialisation was completed and the recommendations informed development of the cassava industrialisation.

Output 3 Value addition

  •   Our scientists developed five high quality cassava based prototype confectionery products, each with different taste, colour, texture and other market attributes.  Two have been selected from these prototypes for commercialisation.
  • Two entrepreneurs identified with two promising business ideas now undergoing incubation, and waiting for better equipment.
  • AgriTT cassava products showcased at the Uganda World Food Day, with interest expressed by President Museveni.
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