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Promotion of conservation agriculture and coordination of agricultural activities in Zimbabwe

Promotion of conservation agriculture and coordination of agricultural activities in Zimbabwe

Full title of the project:

Promotion of conservation agriculture and coordination of agricultural activities in Zimbabwe

Target areas:

nationwide

Recipient:
Contribution:
USD 11 934 836
EUR 9 200 000
Implementation:
01/01/2010-31/12/2012
Project code:
OSRO/ZIM/907/EC
Objective:

To create a conducive environment that reduces the dependence of vulnerable rural communal households on humanitarian assistance and improves their livelihood outcomes.

Key partners:

Government ministries, NGOs and international research institutes.

Beneficiaries reached:

16 512 lead farmers, 150 920 mentored farmers, extension workers and key people working in the agriculture sector.

Activities implemented:
  • Convened regular Agriculture Coordination Working Group (ACWG) meetings to strengthen participation of stakeholders in agricultural and food security interventions.
  • Piloted a project to increase fodder production for dairy cows, and an electronic voucher scheme for input support.
  • Developed guidelines and sector strategies to encourage standardized and sound approaches among stakeholders implementing humanitarian and recovery activities.
  • Trained lead farmers in conservation agriculture and updated guidelines.
Impact:
  • The ACWG continued to be one of the most important fora in the country for information dissemination and discussion, keeping stakeholders abreast of developments in the agriculture sector, resulting in faster responses to challenges, joint planning and information sharing.
  • Electronic debit cards proved to be a safe, fast, sustainable and inexpensive way to assist farmers to access agricultural inputs.
  • The Food and Nutrition Security Policy was developed, as were Agriculture Input Support Guidelines for the 2011/12 and 2012/13 seasons, Urban Agriculture Guidelines and a Conservation Agriculture Strategy, while various national assessments and the Agriculture Food Security Monitoring System were supported.
  • 16 512 lead farmers trained in conservation agriculture mentored 150 920 farmers, while 7 985 farmers received training in conservation agriculture mechanization.
  • Farmers practicing conservation agriculture averaged 1.04 tonnes/hectare and 1.25 tonnes/hectare in 2010/11 and 2011/12, respectively, compared with those not practicing conservation agriculture, who averaged 0.78 tonnes/hectare and 0.85 tonnes/hectare, respectively.
  • A conservation agriculture manual was updated, and conservation agriculture was incorporated into the curriculum of most agricultural colleges in Zimbabwe.