Final Report on the Promotion of Dutch Potato Varieties through Farm Level Demonstrations in Uganda (Resilient Efficient Agribusiness Chains (REACH-Uganda) Project)
Potato is a crucial crop for food and income security in Uganda, particularly in highland areas. While popular in fast-food restaurants, the lack of processing qualities in most local varieties hampers the development of the potato sector. With support from the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC)-Uganda introduced Dutch potato varieties known for superior processing qualities. This study details the on-farm demonstration trials conducted across major potato-producing regions in Uganda to promote the adoption of these varieties. The trials involved the evaluation of eight Dutch and two local varieties, considering factors such as yield, disease tolerance, and marketability. Results indicate significant differences in tuber weight, number of tubers per plant, and overall yield across sites and varieties. Farmer and stakeholder evaluations during field days provided insights into attributes like maturity period, drought tolerance, and disease susceptibility. Additionally, varieties were assessed for consumer uses, with Taurus and Voyager emerging as preferred choices for table and crisps. The study highlights the success of the on-farm trials in raising awareness and recommends continued engagement with seed companies for local seed multiplication.