For a long time, the population has not been feeling the impact of the National Animal Genetic Resources Centre & Data Bank (NAGRC&DB), one of the Agencies mandated to implement an Agro-industrialization program in National Development Plan (NDPIII), under the ministry of Agriculture. However, this year, there is been a difference in the agency’s execution of its mandate under the leadership of Dr Peter Beine.
On paper, NAGRIC&DB should contribute to advancement of agriculture innovation and productivity through sub-programmes such as; Agricultural production and productivity aiming at increasing production and productivity. It also focuses on increasing access to improved animal genetic resources.
- This year, NAGRIC has outperformed the past years with an increased access to improved animal genetic resources rising from 12.5 percent to 14.2 percent.
- The agency set out to focus on Agro industrialization programme coordination and management, with the objective of strengthening the institutional capacity for Agro-industrialization. This was to help in improving service delivery.
Although FY 20/21 has had constraints of covid-19 effects, NAGRC&DB has managed to score a number of achievements such as the Establishment of an Embryo Transfer Services Unit, which was to foster the last-mile delivery of superior animal genetic resources.
The unit has since been equipped with a mobile laboratory to aid in embryo transfer, field semen collection and evaluation of semen dispatched to AI Technicians at the Parish level.
- 1.2 million Poultry distributed
It has also helped in the multiplication and distribution of poultry for rural development where a total of 1,248,000 against a target of 1,000,000 chicks hatched off the NAGRC&DB hatcheries and distributed to farmers countrywide. This performance is attributed to increased egg production from two multi-purpose scavenging poultry breeds (Kuroiler and Rainbow Rooster).
In the same financial year, the entity procured a total of 43,200 parent stock for multiplication and availing to farmers countrywide.
- Liquid nitrogen plants
NAGRC&DB also introduced the Installation of Mini liquid nitrogen plants and production of liquid nitrogen from where it managed to complete and operationalize liquid nitrogen plant in Mbarara to serve western Uganda and greater Masaka. Liquid nitrogen has been supplied across the country and as a result, a total of 98,275 against the target of 80,000 litres of liquid nitrogen were produced and availed for use in the FY2020/21.
- Semen for dairy, pigs, goats
The agency has also facilitated production and availed doses of semen to dairy, beef, pigs and goat farmers, in an effort to boost community breeding activities countrywide. A total of 62,512 against a target of 72,000 doses of semen were produced at the National Bull stud and genetic evaluation Centre and availed to actors along the Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) value chain.
This move has helped in the conservation of animal genetic resources in which a total of 166 Ankole long-horned cattle, 255 Mubende and Small East African breeding goats were procured to support conservation efforts and Aswa ranch was revived to conserve zebu cattle.
- Multiplication and distribution of other livestock
It has also helped in the multiplication and distribution of other livestock enterprises (Cattle, Goats, Pigs). This effort has helped to increase breeding stock; A total of 1,907 against a target of 2300 goat kids were produced on NAGRC&DB center farms and availed to farmers across the country through various pathways. A total of 3,750 against a target of 3500 improved beef calves were produced on and off NAGRC&DB center farms through synchronization. A total of 3,500 against a target of 2,500 improved dairy calves were produced on and off NAGRC&DB center farms through synchronization.
- Promotion of aquaculture
Promotion of aquaculture on NAGRC&DB Centre farms has seen the construction and stocking of four (4) fishponds at Kasolwe stock farm. Two ponds were stocked with 5,000 Nile tilapia fingerlings each, 1 pond was stocked with 5,000 African catfish fingerlings each and 1 pond was stocked with 5,000 Mirror carp fingerlings. Fish stock assessments have also been conducted to establish monthly growth.
- NAGRC&DB has also constructed animal breeding and production support facilities in which a number of breeding and production support structures were established. These ranged from calf pens, specialized paddocks, goat houses, poultry structures, pig Stys, among others.
- It has also upgraded the National Livestock Quarantine Centre (NLQC) at Entebbe for germplasm export and import facilitation. The centre is being utilized as a demonstration centre for the management of superior livestock breeds.
- During this Financial year, a lot of infrastructure development in preparation for receiving a total of 288 superior dairy breeding cattle from South Africa for tropicalization (Jersey and Ayrshire) was undertaken. Infrastructure ranged from cattle sheds, modern spray races, hay ban; among others.
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