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Report of the 14th Sweetpotato Breeders’ Meeting held at Colline Hotel, Mukono-Uganda

The annual Sweetpotato Breeders’ Meeting was held at Colline Hotel, Mukono, Uganda, from June 2-5, 2015. This was the 14th meeting since 2003 and the seventh since the start of the Sweetpotato Profit and Health Initiative (SPHI) in 2009. The meeting was opened by the Director General of National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO), Dr. Ambrose Agona.

In his opening address, Dr. Agona welcomed participants to Uganda and described the importance of sweetpotato for the food security and economy of Uganda and sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), and said that the crop is especially valuable among small-scale farmers and women. He commended the continued cooperation between the different institutions present and their Ugandan counterparts, and urged them to customize their work according to what end-users want and the market demands. In addition, he highlighted the progress made in breeding sweetpotato in SSA, and the challenges such as pests and diseases, and explained that the genomics team, which was attending the meeting for the first time, had come at the right time to develop genomic tools to solve some of these major bottlenecks and to accelerate sweetpotato breeding.  In conclusion, he thanked the various institutions, farmers and donors who have been working to research and promote sweetpotato production in the region.

The following report captures the proceedings of the workshop, including a summary of all presentations and discussions and field visit. It also captures the feedback on on-farm trial protocols and suggestions for improvement.

HOW TO CITE

Wasonga, C., Bukania, C., Mwanga, R. (2015). Report of the 14th Sweetpotato Breeders’ Meeting held at Colline Hotel, Mukono-Uganda.