Rapid Assessment of the State of the Rice Sub Sector in Uganda
Rice is recognized by the government of Uganda under the Agriculture sector Strategic plan as a priority and strategic crop with potential to improve food security and incomes of about 400,000 smallholder farmers. It has increasing importance as a food staple replacing the traditional staples such as bananas in the urban diet. Over the last decade, rice production has been increasing annually at an average rate of 7.33% owing to growth in acreage and promotional initiatives by government and development agencies. Various lowland and upland rice varieties are currently grown, and these include but are not limited to NERICA 1, 4 & 10, TDX305 (Supa), K85 (Kaiso), NamChe, Sindano, K98 (Supa China), K95 (Nylon), Kibuyu, Benenego and Supa America (IR64). The current rice productivity lies below the potential with lowland and upland variety yields lagging below the potential by about 45% and 67% respectively.Current rice demand is estimated at 230,000MT and 383,000MT for milled rice and paddy rice respectively, and has been increasing at an average rate of 10.3% for paddy and 5.79% for milled rice annually. The increase is driven by population growth at a 3.2% rate per annum, increasing urbanization, changing eating habits and preferences with rice considered a superior food as well as the increasing installed milling capacity of new players and existing ones.
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