Moving from Cereals and Legumes to Vegetables to Increase Family Income
By Hilder Driwaru, a smallholder farmer in Wende village who participates in the Nutrition and Income Generation Intervention project.
TEREGO DISTRICT, UGANDA – I used to grow crops such as beans, groundnuts, and sorghum, while also helping my husband with his pork joint business. But we were not earning enough to support our family.
I talked to a farmer who was supplying tomatoes to my husband, and I found out he was making more money than my husband. I consulted him and decided to grow eggplants. However, I planted local varieties, and my yield and profit were lower than I expected.
By chance, I met an East-West Seed Knowledge Transfer Foundation (EWS-KT) staff member. They trained me on various cultivation techniques, including variety selection, seedling production, and crop protection.
During the training, I realised that there is a big difference between local varieties and hybrids. So I began to grow hybrid eggplants, following the EWS-KT techniques.
“From a small, 250-square-metre garden, I receive enough profits to sustain the family.”
From a small, 250-square-metre garden, I receive enough profits to sustain the family, and my husband joins me in the garden every day.
I now make about 40,000–50,000 Ugandan shillings (US$11–$14) each week from my vegetables. Looking ahead, I plan to increase the area for vegetable production and also seek advice from EWS-KT about beginning off-season production for year-round income.
Nutrition and Income Generation Intervention (NIGI) improves access to and consumption of nutritious crops and increases income for refugees and hosts in refugee settlement areas in the West Nile Region of Uganda. This project is co-funded by Netherlands Embassy Uganda and is implemented by EWS-KT in collaboration with Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation.