A group of farmers in Agoro sub-county have committed them selves to growing chili, with support from North- East Chili Producers Association- NECPA, based in Lira district.
The farmers say they started growing chill this year, after NECPA promised to buy their produce right from their homes.
Rev. Simon Acac-Rac a farmer from Agulla Odiciri says he took up chili growing because he was assured of a ready market by NECPA, and that there are still very few people growing it.
Acac-Rac planted an acre of the African bird's eye chili, which he hopes will give him enough money to pay the school fees of his son easily.
Acac-Rac says that type of chili he planted fetches 3.800/= a kilo, which according to him, is encouraging.
Bosco Ochieng another farmer says it is easy to maintain chili in the fields because it demands little money to tend.
Ochieng adds that chili needs little labor, as weeding is done only once, unlike with other crops.
Ochieng discloses that the provision of the solar dryer has eased his work.
NECPA gave out seven solar dryers on credit, which the farmers are expected to pay for after selling their chilli.
Ochieng is happy that instead of carrying the product every morning to dry it in the sun and back in the evening, he employs the easy-to-use solar dryer, which readies his product in just two days.
He says they have now installed seven solar dryers that are being used by the 15 farmers who planted chili this season.
Ochieng says they hope to get additional dryers, after paying for the ones they got on credit from NECPA.
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Although it is still a pilot project, he says the deal has almost gone well between the farmers and NECPA, from giving the driers on credit, promising to buy the product, the good price and building a store for them.
Now, just like Acac-Rac, Ochieng is excited about the price of the chili. Ochieng expects to get one million shillings out of the chili, given the good price.
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Tucker Okee, the Agoro District NAADs coordinator says Chili has become a new cash crop in the area.
Okee however says the long dry spell discouraged many farmers from growing chili.
He says besides the drought termites also destroyed the seedlings from the nursery beds.
Okee says because of that only 15 acres were planted, out of the target of thirty.
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