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Smallholder farmers and sustainable agricultural technologies

 

 

Boost for Africa’s smallholder farmers’ access to sustainable agricultural technologies as USAID announces $ 50 million Africa RISING Phase 2

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The U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Bureau for Food Security in Washington DC has announced funding for a second 5-year phase of the Africa Research in Sustainable Intensification for the Next Generation (Africa RISING) program beginning October 2016. Funded through the agency’s Feed the Future initiative the second phase of Africa RISING will focus on ensuring farming communities within target feed the future zones of influence in Ethiopia, Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania, Ghana and Mali get access to the best-bet/best-fit improved farming practices identified by the project’s research team during the first phase of the project.

“Farmers need access to improved agricultural technologies that have gone through an iterative research process to establish suitability and quality if they are to sustainably optimize the productivity of their farms in a way that lets them benefit from existing and future markets and add value to their crops and herds. This is the goal we aim to achieve through programs like Africa RISING that will now in this new phase have significant focus on ensuring farmers get their hands on improved technologies that have gone through this process,” said Jerry Glover, the USAID Bureau for Food Security’s Senior Sustainable Agriculture Advisor.

The goal of the Africa RISING program is to create opportunities for smallholder  farm households to move out of hunger and poverty through sustainably intensified farming systems that improve food, nutrition, and income security, particularly for women and children, and conserve or enhance the natural resource base. The program which brings together over 100 research and development organizations teaming up to achieve this goal is led by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (in West Africa and East and Southern Africa) and the International Livestock Research Institute (in the Ethiopian Highlands). The International Food Policy Research Institute leads the evaluation and impact assessment.

Read the full article: Africa Rising

Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.