About 4 million households in Uganda survive on agriculture, farming the 28% of the country’s landmass which is arable. Land degradation is threatening the food security of the smallholder farmers, hence perpetuating a vicious cycle of poverty. Several technologies including Integrated Soil Fertility Management (ISFM) to improve soil fertility and agricultural production have been generated. Unfortunately, most of these technologies have either remained on shelves at research stations or have not been taken up by farmers due to technological, institutional, policy and other socio-economic barriers. Addressing these challenges is essential for effective dissemination and uptake of ISFM.
The Uganda Soil Health Consortium (USHC) was established in 2013 through a grant from AGRA with the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI) as the main grantee and the USHC as the subgrantee. USHC has brought together a team of stakeholders from both national, regional and International organizations that are working on agricultural value chain issues in Uganda with a aim of developing a platform for joint planning, sharing information, advocacy, and addressing gaps and challenges in developing, and dissemination of ISFM.
It is anticipated that the consortium will be a platform to enhance capacity development of various stakeholders involved in ISFM innovations. This will lead to harmonization of ISFM innovations and subsequently exacerbate technology dissemination and uptake thereby improving soil fertility status resulting in increased agriculture productivity for the smallholder farmers. The overall goal of the project is to improve food security and income of small-scale farmers through scaling up of ISFM technologies in Uganda and the expected outcomes are:
- To improve access to harmonized ISFM information by different stakeholders
- To increase the average crop yields through the use of ISFM
- To improve collaboration among different players in soil health