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Peter Nordholm Andersen, Organic Denmark

Uganda’s first organic policy has a Danish imprint

Organic agriculture in Uganda is experiencing a breakthrough, having just launched the country’s first National Organic Agriculture Policy with inspiration and years of support from Organic Denmark. The Policy establishes a foundation for funding national organic certification and extension services.

Uganda now has a policy that will contribute significantly to paving the way for organic agricultural production. The National Organic Agriculture Policy (NOAP) was developed with the support of Organic Denmark and will provide opportunities for agricultural extension services to gain government support for providing training in practicing organic agricultural methods at small-scale farms of which there are millions in Uganda.

NOAP thereby builds a foundation for supporting small-scale farm production in their practice of organic agricultural methods to put food on the table and lift the rural population out of poverty.

The culmination of 15 years work

The presentation of the Policy by the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries September 29, 2020 was the culmination of 15 years of political work from the country’s organic organisations.

“We are thrilled that we now have a policy that allows us to actively develop the market for organic produce and fight poverty by providing opportunities for more farmers to produce organically”, says James Mutebi, coordinator at Caritas Kampala, a socioeconomic development organisation.

Similar to Danish organic breakthrough

Per Rasmussen, International Consultant at Organic Denmark, associates the newly launched Policy in Uganda with the organic breakthrough of Danish Parliament launching the first organic policy in the world in 1987. The framework of the policy was greatly contributed to by the driving forces that later founded Organic Denmark and led to the launch of the Danish Organic Label by the Danish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries.

Collaborating on organic initiatives since 2008

Caritas Kampala initiated program partnership with Organic Denmark in 2019 following many years of collaboration. Organic Denmark has completed numerous initiatives in Uganda and other countries, aimed at disseminating and sharing knowledge of organic agricultural production methods via engagement of farmers in participatory collaborative processes.

The initiatives that were completed 2013 – 2017 earmarked funds for advocacy for the development of an organic national policy. The political focus remains a focus area of the program partnership between Organic Denmark and East African organisations continuing till 2023 on funds granted by Civil Society in Development.

Source: Økologisk Nu by Peter Nordholm Andersen (in Danish)