New Slow Food Earth Market in Uganda Brings Country’s Total to Four

Nkonkonjeru Earth Market will be held every Monday from December 21

 

The network of Earth Markets—farmers’ markets that follow Slow Food principles—continues to expand in Uganda. After Lira-Amach, Manafwa and Mukono-Wakiso, Nkonkonjeru Earth Market now joins the Slow Food network, bringing the total number of markets in the country to four, out of a worldwide total of 88.

 

The Nkonkonjeru Earth Market is located in Nkokonjeru Trading Center, along the Mukono-Nyenga road east of Kampala. The idea of creating an Earth Market here first came about in 2021, when local farmers held a one-day trial of an agroecological farmers’ market inside the regular Nkokonjeru Market. The development process since then has been coordinated in collaboration with the Slow Food communities in Buikwe district, the leaders of Nkokonjeru Town Council and partner organizations within Nkokonjeru Town Council.

 

The initiative for the market came because local producers realized they needed to increase access to their diverse products and also ensure the survival of traditional knowledge about the indigenous food species that are gradually disappearing. The range of potential market customers in and around Nkokonjeru Trading Center includes local restaurants, travelers and citizens.

“It has always been a challenge that we had to give away our products at a very low price regardless of the great effort put in to produce them because we did not have another option,” said Sarah Namande, a member of the Nkokonjeru Earth Market. “This Earth Market is going to be the greatest solution to this challenge.”

The market will allow local food communities to sell their agroecological produce directly to consumers. Indigenous food products from the Ark of Taste will also be featured in the Earth Market. The market will initially start with 30 producers who will be selling their locally produced, traditional products—including fruits and vegetables, dairy products, eggs, chicken and other meat, animals and craft—directly to consumers.

Climbing or aerial yams, oyster nuts, mushrooms, mpafu, Mirandano passion fruit, Kisansa coffee and Kisubi, Ndizi and Nakitembe bananas are just some of the foods that will be found at the market. All belong to the Ark of Taste, while some, such as Bukunja climbing yams and Luwero Kisansa coffee, are also Slow Food Presidia.

John Kiwagalo, Slow Food Uganda Programs Officer, commented: “We are launching this Earth Market not only to increase the number of markets but also to improve the accessibility of agroecological products and to create strong connectivity between producers and consumers, which is very important for the development of a good, clean and fair food system.”

 

Inauguration Program

 

EventPerson ResponsibleTime
Anthems and PrayerParish Priest, Nkokonjeru Catholic Parish9.00 – 9.15
Welcoming RemarksChairperson LC1, Mulaje village9.15 – 9.30
Opening RemarksTown Clerk, Nkokonjeru Town Council9.30 – 9.45
Overview of Earth MarketsSlow Food Uganda9.45 – 10.15
Keynote presentationDirector, Rural Agency for Sustainable Development10.15 – 10.30
RemarksDirector, Reach Out Nkokonjeru10.30 – 10.45
RemarksChairperson, Nkokonjeru EM10.45 – 11.00
Tour of Market StallsEM farmers11.00 – 12.00
Launch of the EMMayor, Nkokonjeru Town12.00 – 12.30
Closing RemarksSlow Food Uganda Executive Director12.30 – 12.45

 

The activities mentioned are part of the project Foster community-led initiatives in East Africa by enhancing agroecological productions and market access in response to the global crisis, funded by the Agroecology Fund.

 

For more information, contact John Kiwagalo at [email protected].

 

Slow Food International Press Office

Paola Nano – [email protected] (+39) 329 8321285

Alessia Pautasso – [email protected] (+39) 342 8641029

 

 

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