“Leveraging Science, Technology, and Innovation to Build More Resilient Food Systems: the case of the Juncao Technology”

On this Tuesday July 13, 2021 The Director General Dr  Patrick Karangwa representing the Honorable Minister of Agriculture, Participated in the side event on “Leveraging Science, Technology, and Innovation to Build More Resilient Food Systems: the case of the Juncao Technology”.

This side event was an opportunity for discussion and review of progress in the beneficiary countries, as well as offer opportunities for partnerships to help facilitate knowledge transfer and accelerate SDG implementation.

Through the transfer of Technology and capacity building, the Juncao Project has been successfully adopted by more than 100 countries including Rwanda.

The adoption of Juncao technology in Rwanda consisted of (1) Research and demonstration activities, (2) Introduction and adaptation of suitable JUNCAO grass varieties, (3) Trainings and extension activities, and (4) Post-harvest management

To date, 46 training courses on JUNCAO mushroom cultivation technology were organized, and about 35,000 mushroom farmers have been trained. The beneficiaries include farmers, women's associations, cooperatives, youth, orphans, AIDS organizations, Universities, vocational and technical colleges, hospitals, juvenile prison and so on. In November, 2019, the Ministry of Commerce of China has sponsored a Training Course on JUNCAO technology, organized by Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University in collaboration with Rwanda Agriculture and Animal Resources Development Board (RAB). Forty-five participants, including university lecturers, RAB Staffs, Sector Agronomists, cooperative members, young entrepreneurs, and privates attended this 25 days’ course.

In order to preserve mushroom yield, technologies such as Mushroom preservation in salt, mushroom grinding to get powder, mushroom drying, fried mushroom, mushroom packaging, cooking and other processing technology are evaluated at the Rwanda – China technology Demonstration Center.

Before the introduction of Juncao technology, many people in Rwanda were not aware that mushroom farming is a profitable business that can help fight poverty.

 Now the Juncao business helps producers pay school fees for their children and meet other household needs. Juncao technology has contributed to job creation, food security and generating income for rural communities in Rwanda and has played an important role in tackling malnutrition in the country. To date, stakeholders involved in mushroom production are estimated at 15,000 farmers. Most of them are youth and women. The mushrooms grown in Rwanda are exported across the region, and contribute to improving the health and livelihoods of tens of thousands of farmers and customers.

According to the Director General of RAB Dr Patrick KARANGWA, The Government of Rwanda will keep up efforts to develop and adopt technologies and innovations for achieving agriculture transformation and improvement of farmers’ livelihoods, and highly appreciate cooperation in this regard. “We highly appreciate our cooperation with the Government of China and other development partners in pursuit of transformational growth of economy.” He said.