Hundreds trained on best practices and commercialization of indigenous poultry

Winnie Nanteza
4 Min Read

Hundreds of poultry farmers participated in a field day aimed at imparting best practices and strategies for commercializing indigenous poultry. Organized with support from USAID’s Feed the Future Agriculture Research Activity, the event drew in over 500 participants from various regions of Uganda.

NARO through the Feed the Future Project, implementing efforts to develop and promote enhanced technologies for boosting agricultural productivity. Among the commodities receiving focus is indigenous chicken, with research geared towards elevating their performance through the selection of elite specimens to improve growth rates and egg production. These endeavors aim to elevate the status of indigenous chicken into a commercially viable venture, enhancing incomes and bolstering food security for local farmers.

Investing in the development of indigenous chicken resources serves as a proactive measure to safeguard the poultry industry from potential disruptions in global supply chains. This collaborative research effort involves NaLIRRI and the Mukono Zonal Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MUZARDI).

In line with these objectives, a field day was conducted at MUZARDI on March 16, 2024. The event’s primary goal was to equip participants with the knowledge and skills necessary for successful indigenous chicken production and commercialization. Dr. Kato Hussein provided insights into feeding, welfare, and incubation practices, while Dr. Zuena Nantongo and Richard Lumu shared expertise on housing and disease management, respectively.

Dr. Charles Wendo, a farmer from Mukono District and a participant beneficiary, lauded the timely nature of the training, affirming its pivotal role in empowering farmers. He attested to the tangible benefits he had already reaped from the intervention, stating, “I got my first batch in November last year, and they are thriving. The birds, now 4.5 months old, are on track to start laying eggs by the end of this month or early next month.”

This initiative seeks to facilitate the transition of rural households towards commercial indigenous poultry farming. As part of these efforts, scientists have developed an enhanced breed of indigenous chicken poised to revolutionize poultry farming in Uganda. This breed promises superior productivity in terms of growth rates and egg-laying capacity compared to unimproved breeds.

Joint funding from Feed the Future and the EU’s Development Initiative for Northern Uganda has enabled the establishment of a comprehensive unit dedicated to supporting the national indigenous chicken seed system. Dr. Barbra Zawedde, Director of MUZARDI, highlighted the transformation of existing infrastructure into a state-of-the-art poultry breeder and seed holding unit. This unit encompasses various facilities, including biosecurity and reception units, a hatchery, research/production units, and a bio-waste incinerator, with the overarching objective of enhancing indigenous chicken production and productivity. During the field day, Dr. Henry Mulindwa, the Principal Investigator, underscored the outstanding attributes of the improved breed. He noted its resilience against common diseases, its ability to thrive on homemade feed rations, and its impressive weight gain by the age of 5 months

Share This Article
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *