1Paul Wagstaff, Agriculture Advisor, Concern Worldwide The Impact of Conservation Agriculture on Food Security in two districts of ZimbabwePaul Wagstaff,Agriculture Advisor, Concern Worldwide
2Renewed Interest in agriculture World Development Report 2008Irish Hunger Task Force Report Sept 2008: Ireland to take the lead in ensuring MDG hunger target is met.2008 Food Price CrisisCalls for increased investment in food production, particularly in Africa.What to invest in?
3No magic bullets Water Markets, trade, infrastructure Research Extension and educationHealthFinancial services and insuranceInputsLand tenureEnvironment
4The Principles of Conservation Agriculture 1. Avoid disturbing the soilPlanting basins, direct seed drills, rippers, jab planters2. Keep the soil coveredMulching with crop residues, plant cover crops.3. Rotate your crops
5Conservation Farming in Zimbabwe Concern: , commercial farmers earlier.Started as part of a famine relief program.No draught animals so system based on preparing planting basins during the dry season.Intensive extension support (AGRITEX, Concern Worldwide).50x50m CF plots (1/4 ha) per HH.½ maize, ¼ sorghum, ¼ groundnuts/ cowpeasPartnership with ICRISAT, River of Life, CA Task Force, FAO + NGOs.
7Comparison of maize yields grown in CA planting basins, Zimbabwe Comparison of maize yields grown in CA planting basins, Zimbabwe. (CIMMYT)
8Zimbabwe Context 2008-09 Season General food insecurity. 65% (4million) getting food AID from WFP & C-SAFEHyper inflation (10 million %), Zim $ worthlessUnavailability of farming inputsLimited access to beneficiaries for NGOsBeneficiaries subjected to state sponsored violence.High levels of emigration (Nyanga).
9Impact Evaluation 2008 Household Economy Approach (HEA) Livelihoods-based framework for analysing the way people obtain / access the things they need to survive and prosper.Measuring the livelihood outcome of an intervention rather than just tracking to distribution of inputs and services and verifying outputs.
10Overview of HEAHow people in different social and economic circumstances get the food and cash they need;Their assets, the opportunities open to them and the constraints they face;The options open to them at times of crisis.Hyper inflationary situation – cash values irrelevantCrop production and income converted into kilo calorie equivalents.2,100 kcal per person per day survival threshold.
12SamplingVillages that had received Conservation Farming training, food aid and inputs.Control (counterfactual): Villages that had received food aid + seeds and tools distributions. Paired by livelihoods zones.Stratified sampling based on wealth (poor and very poor).Perfect random sampling was not possible due to political (Nyanga) and need to pair control and CF farmers by livelihood zones.
17Developments in 2009 2,900 CF farmers 82 CF HH per village, 49% Good rains, increased political stability, no violence, introduction of $ and Rand ended hyperinflation but farmers had no purchasing power.Conventional yields of maize: 500-1,200 kg/ha, CF: 2,000-6,000 kg/haAverage production from CF HH in each village: 61 tonnes of maize from CF plots + 63 tonnes from conventional plots.Conventional farmers (51%) 53 tonnes of maize.Total village production: 177 tonnes maizeTotal food requirements in maize equivalents: 99 tonnesSurplus maize in the village: 78 tonnes – enough to support 164 food-deficit HHs.Without CF surpluses would have been 18 tonnes in the village
182009 hunger gap: cash transfers to food deficit HHs rather than food distributions (currently being evaluated).2010: INGOs will buy maize surpluses from the CF farmers to distribute to food deficit areas of Zimbabwe!So, if you want to invest in agriculture for food security, go for Conservation Farming!Concern currently expanding CA to Tanzania (EU), Zambia & Malawi (Accenture), Liberia.Concern has influenced government policy in Angola (Bie and Kuito), DPRK. Tz – work in progress.