Since the Presidential Initiative on Banana Industrial Development (PIBID) interfaced with the Parliamentary Accounts Committee (PAC) recently, many stories have appeared in the media. The Management of PIBID wishes to present the status of the project in pictorial to help inform stake holders who are rightly concerned:

PIBID is a pilot project of the Government of Uganda under the Board and Management Committee, and its underlying theory of change is that rural farmers with access to science led-processing and value addition enterprises will be able to rapidly access profitable market chains that supply local, regional and international markets resulting in increased house hold income.

PIBID is modeled around a rural Technology Business Incubator (TBI) and an Industrial Technology Park (ITP), and its VISION is to establish state-of-the-art banana processing enterprises in Uganda producing value-added Matooke products with competitive market strength both locally and globally, manned by rural farmers/entrepreneurs.

All funds advanced to the Presidential Initiative on Banana Industrial Development were put to optimum use to ensure value for money. Funds queried by PAC were only internally prioritized away from farmers’ activities towards capital development, but farmers’ training resumed in February commencing with Sheema district and will be rolled out to other banana growing districts. PIBID is firmly on course and resolutely focused towards its vision and mission, and has so far achieved the following:

Carried out major renovations on the former dilapidated District Farm Institute at Nyaruzinga, Bushenyi and transformed it into the current Technology Business Incubator (TBI).

Twenty four acres of mother garden of bananas comprising 52 varieties have been planted on the former cattle grazing area.

A medium-scale pilot banana factory has been established at the Technology Business Incubator in Bushenyi district with 85% of the civil works complete. This has been built to UNBS, NEMA, ISO, EUROGAP and HACCP/ international standards. The products willlargely be for export, but will also support bulking for farmers’ value added produce.

Since quality assurance is a minimum requirement for export, a quality assurance laboratory block is under construction with civil works standing at 45%.

Phase 1 of the quality assurance laboratory equipment, chemicals and reagents have been delivered at the TBI.

A resource centre and conference facility is also under construction with 55% of the civil works completed.

Civil works on the bakery complex, the mechanical maintenance workshop and the Tooke business centre/administration block are 70% complete.

External works, namely; internal factory roads, fencing, compound and gardening, water treatment plant, weigh bridge and security, among others, are at 30%.

Five (5) patents for novel banana products which include; Instant flour, Raw flour, Extrusion cooking of banana flour, Lowamylase starch, and Banana wool have been obtained.

A mini processing unit with biogas installation is operational at the TBI.

Products that will be brought on market on completion of the development include inter alia:-Raw Tooke® flour, Instant Tooke® flour, bread, biscuits, cakes, Extruded Tooke® flour products, Tooke soups, Porridge and Tooke flakes.

Construction of the intake water works at Kyamugambira for factory use and irrigation, with pumping capacity of 2000m3/day is 90% complete.

Procurement process is being completed for development of water works for the TBI Research & Development and processing activities.

Four competitive Awards at different fora were achieved: Presidential Scientific InnovationsExcellence Award, 2005; Runners-up, British Council Management Forum: Professional Woman of the Year, 2006; Winner Certificate of Merit, Uganda Farmers’ Federation, 2008; Africa Investor Bio-fuels Initiative of the Year award, Durban, South Africa, 2010.

Land titles for the TBI, Nyaruzinga obtained.

PIBID concept has been presented as a thematic concept at over four world fora: Mombasa, Kenya, 2008; Detmold, Germany, 2008; Beijing, China in 2010; and Capetown, South Africa, 2011

Tooke markets have been opened up in Europe, Japan, UAE and North America with orders put on hold pending completion of the pilot plant.

PIBID exported the 1st batch of 1 ton of instant flour to Oman in August 2011.

The following equipment has been delivered and installed or being installed. 2No. Silos, 3No. Drying chambers, Research equipment, Demonstration irrigation equipment, 2No. Green houses, 2No. Weather stations.

The following equipment has been delivered at the TBI, pending completion of infrastructure and installation; Hammer mill, Bakery equipment biscuit line and Extruder

Design and supervision of the civil works at the TBI have been achieved to approximately 70%.

Survey, Mapping and Master plan development for TBI-Nyaruzinga completed and final report submitted.

Survey, Mapping and Master plan development for ITP-Sanga, specifications, Architectural and engineering drawings, bill of quantities, cost estimates and tender documents completed and final report submitted.

Tooke trademark registered

Tooke products approved by UNBS and quality mark granted.

One PhD, and three MScs completed, and several Research and Development prospects for MSc. and PhD on-going for capacity building.

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