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What you need to know if you are interested in tomato farming

Hategekimana Antoine is a man in his sixties who has been farming tomatoes for over 20 years in the Tabagwe sector of Nyagatare District. He advised young people interested in farming, especially tomatoes, not to seek immediate profit, but assured them that it can be very lucrative.

This man farms more than ten hectares of tomatoes and also serves as a leader representing tomato farmers in the Nyagatare and Gatsibo districts.

In a conversation with Kura, he mentioned that tomato farming is a commendable profession he encourages the youth to pursue, but he advised them to enter the field not driven by immediate profit.

He said, “First and foremost, it’s about being courageous and not looking for quick gains, you need to be diligent. Tomato farming is challenging because it requires constant attention, but if you take care of the plants, fertilize them timely, and seek advice from experienced colleagues, it can be a profession that helps you achieve a great deal.”

Hategekimana shared that when he started farming tomatoes, he initially faced losses but kept trying until he became profitable. He expanded the area he cultivated to ten hectares and now successfully harvests from all of it.

He explained that this allowed him to support his family well, pay for his children’s education, and advance his own standard of living significantly, making him one of those uplifted by tomato farming, which he continues to pursue.

He did not disclose much about the profits from tomatoes but mentioned that this is the sole job that has sustained him and enabled him to build a house, acquire land, and other necessities.

Hategekimana warned some of the youth who venture into farming only to abandon it for other jobs, leaving their work to employees. He stated that this is one of the reasons why many young people do not prosper in farming.

He advised, “I would encourage the youth to be courageous because to dare is to do. Whether it’s tomato farming or any other agriculture, they should not think of it as a demeaning task, but as a profession where they can invest their time and effort, a profession that can sustain them and earn them respect because it involves significant money.”

Hategekimana mentioned that the youth have the opportunity to make a good profit from tomato farming as the country has developed, tomato pesticides are readily available everywhere, and agricultural officials are prepared to assist them.

He noted that professionally conducted tomato farming could be a substantial source of income for the youth, provided they do not leave the work solely to employees.

Aisle in hothouse dividing plantation of all year round grown tomatoes

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