Ngororero district has unveiled the plan for increasing land on which tea is grown for a new factory as one of the ways of addressing human security issues.
Rubaya Tea Factor is the only one operating from Ngororero which gets its production from local tea growers and its own farms.
Speaking to Ngororero residents on Tea Farmers Day held on 15th November 2022, the Vice Mayor in Charge of Economic Development, Patrick Uwihoreye, urged Ngororero residents to start growing tea as the district plans to get another new factory.
Uwihoreye says the district wants to increase the scale of land by 2,238 hectares for more tea production.
“We urge our population to grow tea as it has shown to improve good livelihood. Keep investing in tea plantations as we want to get another new factory within two years,” He said. Adding that “encourage your neighbors whose mindset is still poor for them to start growing tea in order for them to get foreign currency as you do.”
According to the General Director for Rubaya Factory, Jean Mutabazi Havugimana, present data show that tea is grown on 2,000 hectares.
He says the factory seeks to increase production from 9 up to 10 tons and 8 to 9 tons from the factory and local farmers, respectively.
Chantal Uwiringiyimana, 21, and Dative Dusengumuremyi like most neighbors from Ngoma Cell say life has improved by tea.
“Tea picking has been productive to me. I have a well-built house i got from working in a tea plantation. My children have been living well ever since I started this work, and i got a cow from it, as well,” Dusengumuremyi, who used to carry Irish potatoes for other people, said.
“I want to keep stepping forward every year,” Uwiringiyimana, who managed to get six sheep from tea picking, added.
Despite having tea production doubled according to present statistics by the factory, there are challenges growers still encounter including poor roads, high rise of fertilizers and climate change.
Since 2006, the production has increased from 1500 tons annually to 3000 tons, and over 10,000 families presently depend on the factory.
Uwihoreye assured that roads are to be maintained soon so as to help farmers deliver their harvest timely at the factory as well as delivering milk from Gishwati to the market.