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Lot of potential for commercial farming of strawberries

On the 24th of August, the findings of the study ‘Strawberry value chain analysis and market assessment in Rwanda’ were presented by the Ministry of Agriculture & Animal Resources in partnership with HortInvest.

The study assessed the potential for commercial farming of strawberries as an innovative & high value crop. It was inspired by successful trials of new varieties in Muhanga, Karongi & Rutsiro districts. Currently, the imports of strawberries in Rwanda stand at 63.5 MT per year.

Minister of State Jean Chrysostome Ngabitsinze highlighted that farmers should take full advantage of the available market and embrace strawberry farming. He also stated that the Ministry of Agriculture & Animal Resources will keep strengthening capacity of farmers to meet the required quality & standards of produce for high value market.

The Minister of State also urged processors to closely work with local producers and farmers of strawberries in line with bridging the gap in imports of strawberries flavors and use fresh strawberries from Rwandan farmers.

Ambassador of Rwanda to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Olivier J.P. Nduhungirehe, said that this an important step in the promotion of strawberries as a new but high value crop in Rwanda. “This is the fruit of an effective cooperation between the Netherlands and Rwanda in horticulture,” he said.

‘Investing in Horticultural Development in Rwanda’ (HortInvest) is a four-year horticultural value chain-strengthening project funded by the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The project supports the overall objective of Rwandan National Horticulture Policy in terms of fast economic growth and rapid reduction of poverty and malnutrition in Rwanda, and focuses on the northwestern districts of Muhanga, Karongi, Rutsiro, Rubavu, Nyabihu and Ngororero. Led by SNV, the implementing consortium includes IDH – the Sustainable Trade Initiative, Wageningen University & Research, Agriterra and Holland Greentech.