Gulu Archdiocese has entered a partnership with Bukona Processors Limited to industrialize the growth and production of cassava in Northern Uganda.
The Archbishop, John Baptist Odama signed the deal on behalf of the Gulu Archdiocese while Pravin Kekhal, represented the Nwoya based Bukona factory at Cathedral Church in Bardege-Layibi division in Gulu City.
According to the deal, Gulu Archdiocese will grow and supply cassava to Bukona factory for the production of green fuel and ethanol. His Grace John Baptist Odama, the Archbishop of Gulu, says that the partnership is a joint venture between the church, state and private partners to facilitate economic transformation and economic stability among farmers in war-torn Northern Uganda.
He disclosed that Gulu Archdiocese should supply tons of cassava to the factory through more than 6,900 farmers under the Acholibur parish Project in Gulu, Lamwo, Pader, Omoro and Nwoya districts.
The Archbishop explained that much as cassava is meant to ensure families are food secure, it is also important to use it to improve livelihoods, create wealth, bring hope among residents and also transform lives into a middle-income status in line with the government`s vision 2020-2040.
Father Mathew Okun Lagoro, the Acholibur Parish Project Chairperson, says the partnership seeks to add value to cassava production through commercialization.
He says that the partnership will also provide ready market for people involved in large scale cassava production across the Northern Uganda region and improve the livelihood of farmers.
Pravin Kekhal, the Executive Director Bukona Processors Limited explained that the factory would be buying a Kilogram of dry cassava chips from the farmers under the project at Shillings 500.
He disclosed that the factory requires at least 100,000 kilograms of cassava to produce ethanol daily, which makes the partnership worthy.
Commissioned in 2019 in Lapem Village, Koch Goma Sub County in Nwoya district, Bukona Factory was initially meant to produce 30,000 liters of methanol each day.
However, the company shifted its attention to producing green fuel for smart stoves on grounds that it is environmentally friendly and would save forests from depletion for firewood and charcoal.
Speaking during the launch, Hannington Ogwang from the National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) said the initiative is quite appealing, saying that they will support the farmers under the project with 74,000 bags of cassava cuttings to boost their production.
Teddy Esther Acayo, who heads farmers under the Acholibur Parish Project in Pader district, says that they are ready to produce the quantity of cassava required by Bukona Factory.