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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 879: International Conference on Banana and Plantain in Africa: Harnessing International Partnerships to Increase Research Impact

ASSESSING THE IMPACTS OF BANANA BACTERIAL WILT DISEASE ON BANANA (MUSA SPP.) PRODUCTIVITY AND LIVELIHOODS OF UGANDAN FARM HOUSEHOLDS

Authors:   E. Karamura, G. Kayobyo, W. Tushemereirwe, S. Benin, G. Blomme, S. Eden Green, R. Markham
Keywords:   BXW, participatory development communications, Xanthomonas wilt
Abstract:
Banana Xanthomonas wilt disease (BXW, caused by Xanthomonas campestris pv) was discovered simultaneously in 2001 in Uganda and the DR Congo, and in 2002 in neighboring Rwanda. In Uganda, the disease was first seen in the central region where ABB bananas (Musa spp.) dominate. Subsequently, the disease spread into other regions in Uganda and into Kenya and Tanzania. A collaborative study was carried out in four districts in Central Uganda to establish the factors contributing to the epidemic and to assess the impact of the disease on banana yield. On average, 33% of the total banana mats were infected with BXW between 2001 and 2004. None of the banana cultivars were resistant to the disease. However, East African highland cultivars (AAA-EAHB genome) were significantly less affected than cultivars with AAB and ABB genomes. The results showed that a participatory development communication campaign against the disease had substantial impact on reducing disease incidence. Compared to pre-infection levels, the total banana yield loss due to BXW infection was estimated at 3052% between 2001 and 2004, hence a reduction in the amount of bananas harvested by farm households. This in turn had negative livelihood impacts. Consumption of own produced bananas, sale of bananas, prices received, and farm and total household incomes were substantially lower between BXW infected farm households than their noninfected counterparts. For affected farm households that have little or no opportunities outside banana production, other interventions, in addition to the educational campaign on controlling the disease, will be required.
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