Presentation on theme: "Improving Agricultural Support Services for Farmers in Traditional Rainfed Farming Areas PRESENTED TO THE MDTF OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE MONDAY AUG 28 TH, 2006."— Presentation transcript:
Improving Agricultural Support Services for Farmers in Traditional Rainfed Farming Areas PRESENTED TO THE MDTF OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE MONDAY AUG 28 TH, 2006
Characteristics of Traditional Rainfed Farming The traditional rainfed farming system includes nomadic pastoralists, agro- pastoralist and small-scale sedentary farmers who also keep a significant number of livestock. Farms are characterized by entirely rainfed production, largely subsistence, and the use of family labour and hand tools No modern equipment and inputs such as fertilizers or improved seeds are used#.
Performance of Traditional Rainfed Farming. The average productivity of traditional farming systems has declined steadily over the past twenty years. The capacity of farmers and pastoralists to produce food in an efficient and sustainable manner is severely limited by technological constraints among which the most significant are the small size of farms (typically less than 15 feddans) …..
Certified seeds are scarce and expensive. marketing systems are inaccessible. Limited access to credit. Climatic changes have resulted in a degraded natural resource base. No opportunities for earning sustained off-farm income except mechanized farming areas or to cities#.
Research and Extension The Agricultural Research Corporation (ARC) responsible for crops, forestry, and pastures, is under the Ministry of Sciences and Technology. Aside from funding and institutional constraints, the research work conducted by ARC is not focused on small-scale farmers …
In 2001, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests recognized that extension is a critical factor in improving agricultural production and food security. Extension department was upgraded into a Technology Transfer and Extension administration (TTE). The main objective was bridging the gap between research and farmers. 15 TTE administrations have been established at state level, with extension staff based in localities. Though State TTEs are part of the State Ministries of Agriculture, Animal Resources and Irrigation, they work under the technical supervision of the TTE administration in Khartoum#.
Generating Income and Reducing Poverty In order to increase incomes, reduce poverty and improve rural welfare the traditional rain-fed farming areas must develop substantially. It will be necessary to introduce and disseminate improved production technologies such as improved varieties, improved cultivation practices (integrated crop rotations), animal husbandry practices, agro-processing and storage technology …
Such activities should be supported by a program of agricultural research aimed at developing technologies useful to small-scale farmers. Establishing financial services for small-scale farmers is another key element of the solution to low-levels productivity#.
Project Objective To achieve rapid and sustainable improvements in incomes, employment, poverty reduction and food security in traditional rainfed farming areas in North Sudan which have been subject to economic and social disruption because of the civil war and degraded natural resources#. To achieve rapid and sustainable improvements in incomes, employment, poverty reduction and food security in traditional rainfed farming areas in North Sudan which have been subject to economic and social disruption because of the civil war and degraded natural resources#.
The focus of assistance in the proposed intervention is to support the use of improved technologies in agricultural production, animal husbandry, and agro-processing by rural communities through access to enhanced support services by public, private and community service providers.
The project would support vulnerable small-scale farmers in areas of previous conflict such as Blue Nile, South Kordofan, North Kordofan, White Nile, Blue Nile, Kassala and Red Sea States which are still prone to conflict and also vulnerable to drought. Blue Nile and South Kordofan will be given priority and their particular status - recognized in the CPA through specific protocols - will be integrated when defining final project implementation modalities. Implementation of the programme ’ s components would rest at State level while the central level would have a coordination role#.
Project methodology The transfer of improved technology through extension services will be the object of interventions. GNU MAF Technology Transfer and Extension administration has identified successful approaches applied recently in Sudan which have inspired the design of this project: –Sennar technology transfer pilot project, –Abdel Hakem (Gezira Scheme) pilot project, –Special food security programme in North Kordofan. Many lessons have been learnt during the implementation of these interventions:
Localities, communities and individuals have to prove their willingness to receive support. Selection should be on competitive basis. Community or farmer organizations need to be trained and empowered. loans need to be delivered through community organizations Provision of inputs should be done through the private sector#.
Project Components The project would be implemented through the following activities: I.Building capacities of farmers, communities and public and private sector service providers II.Accelerated access of technology to small-scale farmers III.Longer-term transfer and adoption of improved production and technologies IV.Rural Finance Funds#.
I.Building capacities of farmers, communities and public and private sector service providers A.Formation of farmer groups; B.Identification of Community Extension Workers (CEWs) C.Training of extension network D.Identification of rural Community Based Organizations (CBOs) at village / locality level E.Ensuring gender awareness; F.Formation of State Fund Committees; and G.Training of CBOs and State Fund Committees in project preparation, evaluation, administration and management, marketing and credit management.
II.Accelerated access of technology to small-scale farmers A.Establishment of trial plots for on- farm demonstrations by Community Extension Workers; B.Based on surveys of needs and farmer participation, relevant, known, and proven technologies rapidly disseminated. C.Provision of inputs by the private suppliers.
III.Longer-term transfer and adoption of improved production and technologies A.Support to Research, B.Organization of on-farm research and transfer of improved production technologies using farmer groups supported by public and private providers of support services; and C.Training in improved on-farm agro- processing and storage techniques through community-based organizations (CBOs).
IV.Rural Finance Funds A.Rural Finance Funds would be established and administered by autonomous State Fund Committees; B.Inputs and services required by farmer groups are paid by State Fund Committees, delivered by the private sector, and repaid in cash or in kind by farmer groups; C.Trained individuals or groups of individuals can access loans based on plans/proposals approved by CBOs, the latter would also monitor repayment and collect instalments.
Project Costs The total project cost envisaged is US$ 30 million. Expenditure items can be summarised as follows: – GoNU (66%)MDTF(33%) Capacity building4 Capacity building4 Technology transfer15 Rural Innovation Funds10 Rural Innovation Funds10 Contingencies1 Contingencies1 Grand total30 Grand total30
Project Institutional Arrangements Implementation: State Ministries of Agriculture, Animal Resources and Irrigation (SMAARI), and the Technology Transfer and Extension administration of the GNU Ministry of Agriculture and Forests. It is expected that while selected State would be directly responsible for implementation, TTE would have a coordinating role. The Project Steering Committee would be chaired by the Under-Secretary of MAF The State MAARIs would implement this project through autonomous Project Implementation Units (PIUs) State Steering Committees (SSC) would be established at the state level to guide PIUs in their planning and monitoring work#.
Potential Risks and Issues Potential Risks and Issues The success of improved technology transfer activities depends on the relevance the transfer methodology and structure defined. Transfer methodology developed under this project will have to take into consideration the particularities of targeted communities and integrate lessons learnt from other interventions. There is limited capacity and limited experience at the state and central levels. Technical assistance is needed to implement these interventions.
Preparation Of The Full Project Proposal MAF GNU Technology Transfer and Extension administration has requested technical assistance from the MDTF Technical Assistance Facility (TAF). This technical assistance would help the TTE and States develop the necessary capacity to prepare the full project proposal. This technical assistance would help the TTE and States develop the necessary capacity to prepare the full project proposal. The request for assistance was approved by the TAF Steering Committee Work on preparation of TOR and tender arrangement had almost finished.
Key Development Issues and Rationale for MDTF Involvement Two thirds of the population in Northern Sudan lives in rural areas. More than 80 % of the rural population depends on rainfed traditional farming for their livelihoods, a system prevalent in Western, Central and Eastern Sudan. The estimated levels of rural poverty (predominantly in the traditional rainfed farming areas) in North Sudan are in the range of 65 to 90 %#.