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Yumbe Mango Factory to start operations

Some of the workers sorting mangoes during the technical test of the Yumbe Mango processing factory in December 2020. PHOTO URN

Yumbe, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | There is a sigh of relief among fruit farmers in the West Nile sub region after Aringa Mango Farmers’ Cooperative Society Limited (Ltd) is set to begin buying mangoes for processing at Yumbe Mango Factory this season.

The factory which is located in Lodonga sub county in Yumbe district was commissioned by President Yoweri Museveni on January 9, 2021, but remained non-operational due to uncompleted construction works due to funding challenges.

However, the management of Aringa Fruit Farmers’ Cooperative Society Ltd in a statement indicates that they will commence buying mangoes from farmers this month for processing at the factory for commercial purpose.

Saidi Aniku, the chairperson of Aringa Fruit Farmers’ Cooperative Society explains that they have resolved to start buying mango pulp in the current Mango season from the farmers so as to operationalize the factory. Aniku said their target is to buy indigenous ‘kagoggwa’ mango varieties.

Yassin Angua, the acting manager for Aringa Fruit Farmers’ Cooperative Society said although Nilezilla Limited, a consortium that manages and operates the factory is yet to announce the indicative price of a kilogram of mangoes, farmers should remain organized. According to Angua, the factory will foster socioeconomic development of households in the sub region.

Alli Dudu, a farmer, welcomed the development noting that farmers who rushed to plant more mango trees in anticipation of the factory have been incurring huge losses due to the delayed operationalization of the factory.

Meanwhile, Muhammed Anule, a farmer in Barakala Town council questions the timing of the initiative noting that several mango farmers in the district will not benefit much since most of the mango fruits are getting wasted away due to over ripening.

Alli Dudu, a farmer, welcomed the development noting that farmers who rushed to plant more mango trees in anticipation of the factory have been incurring huge losses due to the delayed operationalization of the factory.

The Yumbe Mango Processing factory which is a Public Private Partnership initiative was conceived and developed by the Government of Uganda in partnership with Food and Nutrition Solutions Ltd (FONUS), Aringa Mango Farmers’ Cooperative Society and Uganda Development Corporation (UDC).

The government has so far injected over 10 billion shillings to establish and operationalize a fully equipped mango processing facility according to information obtained from the Uganda Development Corporation.

The 5 metric ton per hour factory is a fulfillment of President Museveni’s pledge made during the West Nile Centenary celebrations at the former Arua Hill Boma grounds in Arua 2014.

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