Ministerial praise for NUCAFE’s strategic plan
Tress Buchanayandi, Uganda’s Minister for Agriculture, on 31 July launched the five-year strategic plan of the National Union of Coffee Agribusinesses and Farm Enterprises (NUCAFE), which is designed to strengthen and enhance competitiveness by empowering Ugandan coffee farmers in the value chain to boost production and productivity.
At the event held in Bugoolobi, the minister congratulated NUCAFE and its development partners on their accomplishments and for putting together a strategic plan that will help improve the livelihoods of the country’s coffee farmers, reduce poverty and increase foreign-exchange earnings through exports.
Mr Buchanayandi pledged government support both at the policy level by finalising the coffee policy and at the collaborative level through a memorandum of understanding between NUCAFE and the Ministry of Agriculture. The minister praised the Farmer Ownership Model and noted that many farmers with NUCAFE membership have used the model to better their livelihoods, while earning more from value-added coffee. The successes to date should spur the continued implementation of the model, he said.
Gerald Ssendaula, Chairman of the NUCAFE board, set out the union's strategic direction and described the achievements, challenges and recommendations to attendees at the event, which, apart from Minister Buchanayandi, included officials from other ministries and government-owned companies, exporters, the media, development partners and the leaders of coffee-farmer associations.
Joseph Nkandu, NUCAFE's Executive Director, presented the Strategic Plan 2012-2016, which puts focus on professionalism, leadership, creativity and innovation, moral integrity and entrepreneurial culture, and sets out a clear implementation strategy. He highlighted the plan’s vision, ‘Coffee farmers profitably own their coffee along the value chain for sustainable livelihoods, customer satisfaction and societal transformation’, and emphasized the four strategic objectives and the targets of the plan:
• To strengthen NUCAFE's organizational capacity as a centre of excellence in innovation and social entrepreneurship;
• To beef up the organizational capacity of member enterprises / organizations;
• To empower coffee-farming families in the profitable segments of the coffee value chain;
• To provide a conducive environment for a sustainable coffee value chain in Uganda;
The various stakeholders lauded NUCAFE's strategic plan as a new means of bolstering coffee farmers and boosting their competitiveness along the value chain for sustainable livelihoods, customer satisfaction and societal transformation.
Mr Ssendaula thanked NUCAFE’s development partners for their supporting and acknowledged in particular the work done by the International Trade Centre, CBI, aBi Trust, Trias, Agricord, UCDA and Agriterra, urging them and other partners to continue their collaboration with NUCAFE to ensure that the strategic plan becomes a reality.