Issue: CWMP/NL/007 March 2016 ACAI and IITA-Cassava and IITA-Cassava Weed Management Project plan a...

Issue: CWMP/NL/007 March 2016 ACAI and IITA-Cassava and IITA-Cassava Weed Management Project plan a ... “I see this as a win-win situation,â€‌ Dr ... that farming households
Issue: CWMP/NL/007 March 2016 ACAI and IITA-Cassava and IITA-Cassava Weed Management Project plan a ... “I see this as a win-win situation,â€‌ Dr ... that farming households
Issue: CWMP/NL/007 March 2016 ACAI and IITA-Cassava and IITA-Cassava Weed Management Project plan a ... “I see this as a win-win situation,â€‌ Dr ... that farming households
Issue: CWMP/NL/007 March 2016 ACAI and IITA-Cassava and IITA-Cassava Weed Management Project plan a ... “I see this as a win-win situation,â€‌ Dr ... that farming households
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Transcript of Issue: CWMP/NL/007 March 2016 ACAI and IITA-Cassava and IITA-Cassava Weed Management Project plan a...

  • www.cassavaweed.org1

    ACAI and IITA-Cassava Weed Management Project plan a joint platform on communication

    The African Cassava Agronomy Initiative (ACAI) and IITA Cassava Weed Management Project (IITA-CWMP) have announced plans to have a common communication platform. Both projects are supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and also led by IITA. The aim is to empower farmers with the knowledge and information that will help transform rural livelihoods. The idea of a joint communication platform was initiated by Dr Bernard Vanlauwe, IITA Director for Central Africa, who sees communication as a vital tool for changing lives. No matter what we do, if we dont communicate, we wont make impact at farm levels. So, we must communicate our science, Dr Vanlauwe said during the launch of the ACAI project recently. Project Leaders of ACAI and IITA CWMP (Drs Abdulai Jalloh and Alfred Dixon) endorsed the initiative of having a common

    platform.I see this as a win-win situation, Dr Jalloh said.Both ACAI and IITA-CWMP aim to raise the productivity of cassava in Africa which currently averages 1011 tons per

    hectare, well below attainable yields of over 30 tons per hectare.Godwin Atser, Communication & Knowledge Exchange Expert will lead the implementation of the joint platform.

    Nigerian engineers and members of the Cassava Weed Management team

    Issue: CWMP/NL/007 March 2016

    Dr Vanlauwe

    A study on the Training Needs As-sessment of extension agents in Ni-geria has revealed several gaps and constraints that have hitherto limited the effectiveness of extension service in the country.Findings from the study which was recently presented in a paper titled, The capacity of extension staff in managing weeds in cassava sys-tems in Nigeria in Nanning, China, during the World Congress on Root and Tuber Crops noted that unless extension workers have the capacity to transfer improved knowledge on weed control in cassava, farmers will not be able to maximize the benefits of improved weed management tech-nologies.Godwin Atser, a Communication and Knowledge Exchange Expert at the International Institute of Tropical Ag-riculture (IITA), Ibadan, Nigeria who presented the paper also said that the current farmer-extension ratio of one extension worker to 3011 farm fami-lies was a major constraint limiting the effectiveness of extension system in Nigeria.

    The ratio of one extension worker to over 3,000 farmers drasti-cally fell short of the target of the Nigerian government to have one agricultural extension worker attached to 800 farmers, posing a serious challenge to the agricultural transformation agenda of the gov-ernment, he explained.Atser said that apart from the gross-ly inadequate number of extension workers, his study indicated that the existing workers were older, and lacked capacity development as a result of underfunding.The study, which was funded by the IITA-CWMP specifically, investi-gated the capabilities of extension staff of Agricultural Development Programmes (ADPs) in weed management in cassava systems in Nigeria.The findings of the study, Atser said, showed that more than 80 per cent of extension staff have not had training that specifically targets weed management in cassava.There is knowledge gap on weed identification, types of herbicides,

    cassava varietal identification, and computer skills among extension staff.Furthermore, the extension system in Nigeria is male dominated and majority are 50 years and above. Radio, telephone and group discus-sion were the most used commu-nication channels for technology transfer to farmers by extension staff.He recommended training of extension staff on sustainable management of weeds in cassava systems with specific emphasis on weed identification, herbicides use and application, cassava varietal identification, gender and computer skills.Atser concluded by calling for recruitment of young, educated and upwardly mobile agricultural extension workers in Nigeria, with intensive capacity development to meet up with the need for effective dissemination of information to farmers on new technologies, varie-ties and market opportunities.

    Study reveals gaps in Nigerias extension system

    Dr Dixon

  • www.cassavaweed.org2

    IITA-CWMP explores weed control options with Chinese CATASThe IITA-CWMP and Chinas

    Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS), are exploring the possibility of introducing biodegradable plastic mulching technology to control weeds in cassava farming systems in Nigeria.The discussion with CATAS is a

    follow up to the recent visit during the World Congress on Root and Tuber Crops in Nanning, China where the IITA-CWMP team participated and had the opportunity to attend a field visit in China. Farmers in China are using the

    biodegradable plastic mulching technology to control weeds in cassava and are recording impressive results.Project Leader of the CWMP, Dr

    Alfred Dixon initiated the discussion with the CATAS delegation during their recent visit to IITA. Dr Dixon, who received the delegation on behalf of Dr Nteranya Sanginga (IITA Director General), spoke extensively on the need to collaborate in weed science. He informed the delegation of IITAs

    commitment to end the use of hoes and machetes on research farms, stressing that the IITA-CWMP had developed weed control methods but was still open to new technologies including the use of mechanical weeding to give farmers a variety of options.The leader of the Chinese

    delegation Wang Jiabao, a Deputy Secretary-General of CATAS said

    his organization was excited to visit IITA and proposed that both IITA and CATAS would work together in the framework being proposed in the Memorandum of Understanding on areas of mutual interest. We hope this cooperation will

    benefit both IITA and CATAS, Jiabao said.Mr Jiabao, was accompanied by

    Dr. Ou Wenjun, an expert in cassava cultivation from the cassava center of CATAS; Dang Xuanmin, an expert in vegetables breeding and cultivation from the tropical vegetables center

    IITA-CWMP selects 58 sites for on-farm trials in key cassava growing zones

    of CATAS; and John Wen, Manager of the marketing department of Green Agriculture West Africa Ltd(GAWAL).In Nigeria, IITA and CATAS will be

    working with GAWALa Chinese private agricultural firm on several agricultural issues. GAWAL has also offered to serve as a link between IITA and other Chinese agricultural solution providers.Mr Wen promised to get back to

    the IITA-CWMP team on the plastic mulching technology.

    CATAS team examines IITA motorised weeder

    The IITA Cassava Weed Management Project has selected 58 sites for on-farm trials across the four states of Nigeria where cassava is a major source of food security. The states

    are: Abia, Benue, Ogun and Oyo. The selection of the on-farm trial sites was done in collaboration with extension service providers. In Abia, the Project team worked with the National Root

    Crops Research Institute (Umudike), Abia State Agricultural Development Program, and KOLPINGan arm of the Catholic church in the farm selections. In Benue, the team worked with the University of Agriculture Makurdi, and the Benue Agricultural and Rural Development Authority; while in Ogun State, the team worked with the Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta, and the Ogun State Agricultural Development Program, and the Justice Development and Peace Movementan arm of the Catholic Church. In Oyo state, the team worked with the Oyo State Agricultural Development Program and the Justice Development and Peace Movement in Oyo.Selected farmers will contribute to the trials by bearing the cost of stumping. Two sets of trials are envisaged: Herbicides trials and mechanical weeding trials. Farmers will observe the trials and chose the best bet options for adoption. Prof Friday Ekeleme and Godwin Atser who led the site selection teams expressed optimism that the on-farm trials would offer farmers the right tools and approaches in controlling weeds in cassava.

    Selected sites

  • www.cassavaweed.org3

    A new dawn: ACAI launched in Nigeria and Tanzania To benefit 150,000 householdsThe African Cassava Agronomy

    Initiative (ACAI) project has been launched in Nigeria and Tanzania. The Project plans to improve the livelihoods and incomes of cassava farmers in Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Uganda, and DR Congo by researching, and tapping into and implementing best-bet agronomic practices.The Project, which is led by IITA

    with funding support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will specifically improve cassava yields, cassava root quality, cassava supply to the processing sector, and fertilizer sales, thereby engaging over 100,000 households in Nigeria and Tanzania, and facilitating the engagement of at least 30% women farmers.The value of benefits from this

    project in Nigeria and Tanzania is projected to be over 27 million USD. Furthermore, through engagement of households in Ghana, Uganda, and DR Congo and through extra interest generated in the products developed by the Project, these figures are expected to increase for at least 150,000 households and a value created of at least 40 million USD within the 5-year time frame of the project, explained Dr Bernard Vanlauwe, IITA Director for Central Africa.In sub-Saharan Africa (SSA),

    cassava productivity has marginally increased to around 1011 tons per hectare, well below attainable yields of over 30 tons per hectare. With the need for intensifying cassava production in areas where population densities have reduced access to fallow land and with cassava roots becoming important raw material for the processing sector, this yield gap needs to be reduced.Nigerias Minister of Agriculture

    and Rural Development, Mr Audu Ogbe, sai