The New Times (Kigali)

Rwanda: Muhanga District Moves to Improve Banana Production

MUHANGA-In a bid to modernise and increase banana production in Muhanga district, local government leaders have embarked on a programme to distribute improved banana suckers to farmers in various parts of the district.

Addressing the press on Thursday, district mayor, Yvonne Mutakwasuku, said that banana plantations cover about 30 per cent of all arable land in the district.

"The initial target is to have 200 hectares of [improved banana] plantation", she said.

She explained that there is a move to shift from the traditional ways of farming to modern ones."

"Banana is one of the major crops for our residents. Bringing in new practices will make a big impact on the lives of farmers," she added.

Mutakwasuku said that with the improved seeds, farmers expect to get higher yields and thus improving their social welfare and contributing to the development of the whole country.

In a related development, local officials have called to support the adoption of modern techniques in farming.

Mutakwasuku said there is a need for farmers to adopt mechanisation as a way of boosting their production.

She noted that the district was pushing local farmers to acquire tractors for them to develop.

According to her, five tractors have been acquired since the beginning of this fiscal year as part of efforts to push for modern farming techniques.

"We have got to produce enough food for consumption and enough to sell", Mutakwasuku said.

"Mechanisation is the best way to increase our production."

She also called up on farmers to utilise fertilisers and embrace the land use consolidation programme, which she said is also critical in boosting their produce.

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