Government has vowed to achieve zero hunger by ensuring food security and nutritious diets for all its people by embracing the 2030 agenda for sustainable Development and 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
LT Col, (Rtd) Bright Rwamirama, the State Minister for Agriculture and Animal Husbandry, speaking at the Uganda Media Center on Friday, said the country has developed policies to support the Agro-food systems.
“we have developed several policies that support the agro food systems like, the National Food and Nutrition Policy 2003, the National Agricultural Policy 201 3, National Action Plan for Nutrition 2015 and the National Agricultural Extension Policy 2015,” Rwamirama said.
Rwamirama said that all these are envisaged at addressing natural resource management issues, food security and call for “Nutrition for All” interventions to improve the nutrition status in the country.
“Agriculture’s contribution to employment in Uganda cannot be overemphasized. In fact, in 2019, the sector employed 73 percent of the total Ugandan working population. It provides more employment to female adults (about 88.9 percent) as compared to male adults (about 78.6 percent),” Rwamirama said.
He added, “About 38 percent of youth are employed in agricultural activities according to statistics from UBOS. This is also a clear demonstration that the sector continues to be a source of livelihood to especially women and youth.”
Rwamirama who was speaking ahead of the commemoration of the 41st World Food Day that will be held under the theme “Our actions are our future, better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life” noted that the country has made significant progress in improving agricultural production & productivity by use of machinery.
However, he said currently Uganda produces more than enough food to feed everyone, it’s food systems are out of balance.
“In Uganda, the challenge is that the population continues to grow at a rapid rate of 3.2% per annum; while agricultural productivity is at 2.9% per annum. As a country we have a food gap of 0.3% that must be addressed to match the Population Growth Rate,” Rwamirama said.
Speaking at the same event, the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) country Director, Antonio Querido, said that there’s need for a better production to Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns, through efficient and inclusive food and agriculture supply chains at local, regional and global level.
Querido said that this can be done by ensuring resilient and sustainable agri-food systems in a changing climate and environment.
“We need Better nutrition to End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition in all its forms, including promoting nutritious food and increasing access to healthy diets,” Querido said.