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Agroking Uganda limited exports meat, eggs and maize to Rwanda, Kenya and plans to venture into Tanzania soon. The company’s achievements over last years have not been without challenges. Having started out with a weak management team with hardly any track record of success, the annual survey seeks to recognize Uganda’s fast growing medium sized companies that showcase business excellence as well as highlighting the country’s successful entrepreneurship stories.

Although it has not been an easy journey, Baguma says his story of growing this business is filled with hard work, persistence, commitment and focus thus am ambitious and I strive for success.”  Much as Agroking Uganda limited is the biggest formal player, its market share is affected by roadside butcheries that determine the market price. “We compete with roadside butcheries that don’t even pay taxes like income tax among others. There is need for standardization in terms of prices, packaging and quality.”

“Exporting live animals to South Sudan distorts supply. We told President Museveni about it and he asked us to guarantee that there is enough internal processing capacity for him to ban the exportation of live animals. But this is a chicken and egg situation, It’s hard to invest in bigger capacity if I don’t have raw materials, it’s a tricky situation.”

Sudan threat
Prior to exporting live animals to Sudan, 500 cows could be slaughtered in Kampala alone on a daily basis however; the number has now fallen to about 200.  The country produces 142,000 metric tons, with beef contributing 107,000, goat meat 28,000 metric tons and sheep 5,000 tones. The sector contributes about 17 per cent of Uganda’s GDP, although it could do better with a well-structured market.

Secondly, the high cost of borrowing is also taking a toll on businesses and this, according to Baguma makes local dealers uncompetitive at the global scene. The high rates for shilling denominated loans which currently averages at about 20 per cent and the inadequate skilled labor market make the business unattractive on international markets.

Beef, chicken and other poultry products are a must cook, especially during the festive season. Many people call for celebration with both or at least either of them. However, there are many meat handlings mistakes that you must watch out for or you will cause food-borne illnesses to your family members. says poor handling of meats starts right from storage. When you buy chicken, beef or other poultry from the supermarket, ensure to keep it separate from the other items that you are buying.


Poor storage
“It is very unhealthy for raw meat, chicken and other poultry products you intend to cook to come into contact with other foods. Blood and fluids from meats often leak and drip from packages. If stored on a shelf above ready-to-eat foods like fruits and vegetables, you could contaminate all the food items in your fridge,”

Agroking recommends that chicken packages should be placed on a plate or in a dish and stored on the bottom of the shelf or in the bottom drawer of the fridge. The plate will capture any juices that leak, protecting everything else stored in the fridge.
“Let the chicken sit for not more than 15 minutes at room temperature. If you leave it out longer than that, you may expose it to food poisoning. But you cannot cook it directly from the fridge or it will have a brownish color with an undercooked inside,”

Washing hands
Agroking says during the cooking process, hands are more likely to spread bacteria. Cross contamination occurs in the entire kitchen by simply touching different surfaces with dirty hands. “Take extra care where you touch after handling chicken. It is even advisable that you thoroughly wash your hands with soap and make them dry with a clean dry towel, not the one that you have been using to wipe surfaces lest you pick up bacteria from the towel.” cooks should wash hands before and after handling food for at least 20 seconds, with soap and warm, running water before and after handling food.

Reusing tools
Chop raw chicken on a separate preparation board from other ingredients you might be slicing or mincing for your meal. Agroking remarks that tongs, chopping boards and other utensils must be washed first before using them again to prepare another meal or food item, however tempting it is “If you used tongs to flip raw chicken, do not use the same tongs to toss salads. This can lead to transfer of bacteria from the chicken to the salads. This in turn increases your risk for food-borne illnesses and food poisoning.”

“You should not cook beef or chicken directly from your fridge because it may not cook evenly,” Some people defrost using hot water but this is not advisable, according to Agroking, because the outer parts of the food item will start cooking before the ice inside melts. “The best and quickest way is to microwave it on a plate for a minute or continue checking on it if it has defrosted, depending on the size and intensity of the freezing.”


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