Farmers, students, traders, and organizations gathered at the CBS Pewosa Agribusiness Fair 2023 in Masaka City to gain valuable knowledge about farming. This six-day event provided a platform for farmers to explore various aspects of agriculture and discover innovative techniques.
One of the standout stalls was organized by the National Agricultural Research Organisation (Naro). Here, visitors were educated on the significance of soil testing, selecting high-quality seeds, fodder grass production, fish farming, and urban farming skills. Eseri Nankya, a soil scientist from Mukono Zonal Agricultural Research Development Institute (MUZARDI) Kamenyamiggo Satellite, stressed the importance of soil testing before applying fertilizers. She explained that blindly using fertilizers can harm the soil and lead to pollution in nearby water sources.
Nankya also discussed soil conservation methods such as mulching, trash lines, and hedgerows. These practices protect the soil, prevent erosion, and enhance its fertility. Grass strips and infiltration pits were presented as effective soil protection techniques, especially for sloped terrain and soils with low water absorption capacity.
The fair also featured livestock development insights, with Adrian Ddumba from MUZARDI introducing climate-smart improved forages. Various fodder grass varieties, including bracharia toledo, bracharia mulato, and bracharia cayman, were showcased. These grasses are known for their drought tolerance, fast growth, and high yields. They can be used as livestock feed and conserved as hay or silage.
Additionally, visitors learned about Longe 5 maize variety, known for its suitability for low-income farmers who can save its seeds for future planting. Naro Holdings Ltd displayed a range of improved seeds for different crops, from rice and soybean to coffee and avocado.
The fair also highlighted urban farming possibilities, demonstrating how people in urban areas can grow their own vegetables using plastic containers.