Assessing marketing of tomatoes in Kampala, Uganda
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The study focused on assessing the marketing of tomatoes in Kampala, Uganda using the different markets of Wandegeya, Kalerwe, Nakawa, and Nakasero as the case study. The study was based on different specific objectuves that included; to characterize the market and market players of tomato in Kampala, determine the efficiency of tomato marketing channels in Kampala, and propose policy recommendations to improve marketing efficiency of tomato in Kampala, Uganda. Data was collected using a questionnaire from a sample of 90 respondents who were the different farmers, transporters and retailers or wholesalers involved in the tomato business. The study found that there was a statistically significant relationship price of tomatoes and marketing efficiency in Kampala. The study identified three major tomato chains: where farmers sold tomatoes directly to wholesalers who in turn sold to retailers; farmers selling directly to retailers who then sold to consumers; and farmers selling to wholesalers through transporters, and the wholesalers selling to retailers who finally sold the tomatoes to consumers. These market chains were profitable and efficient because on average, all the chain actors realized profits, and the profits in relation to total marketing costs were high. At farmer node, the chain in which farmers sold tomatoes directly to rural traders was the most efficient and profitable. This was followed by the one in which farmers sold to wholesalers through transporters. The marketing techniques of tomatoes showed a positive correlation with marketing efficiency of tomatoes. The commonly used tomato marketing techniques in Kampala were identified as advertising through radios and televisions (40.0%). The study also revealed that tomato producers and traders face several different types of risk in the marketing of tomatoes. The uncertainty of the tomato market is one major risk whereby over production or under production may occur leading to losses. This study recommended that farmer/producer and seller sensitization should be enforced by different agricultural authorities concerning the best marketing techniques and the rightful tomato varieties to invest in as a way of avoiding low yields in times of bad climate. This can also help in improving the longevity of tomatoes after harvest which also addresses the use of perishability and consequently enhances tomato marketing efficiency.