January 5, 2011 – MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. – IFDC is implementing four new projects covering 11 countries in Africa and Eurasia. The initiatives are in line with IFDC’s mission to increase sustainable agricultural productivity through the development and transfer of effective and environmentally sound crop nutrient technology and agricultural marketing expertise.
“Our projects are improving the lives of smallholder farmers around the world by training them in efficient nutrient management and facilitating their access to much-needed agricultural inputs such as fertilizers and seeds,” says Dr. Amit Roy, IFDC president and CEO. “We’re also working with governments to provide policy advice conducive to private sector market development and agricultural growth.”
Below is a brief description of each project. More information can be found at www.ifdc.org/projects.
Accelerating Agricultural Productivity Improvement in Bangladesh (AAPI), 2010-2015
Funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the AAPI project is improving food security and accelerating income growth in rural areas in Bangladesh by increasing agricultural productivity on a sustainable basis. Working to improve resource use efficiency in agriculture production systems, the project will focus on improved soil fertility management and the rapid diffusion of the proven fertilizer deep placement technology. AAPI will also support water management systems such as alternate wetting and drying, a water-saving technology that lowland (paddy) rice farmers can apply to reduce water use in irrigated fields.
COMESA Regional Agricultural Inputs Program (COMRAP), 2010-2012
Through improved access to finance, training, fertilizer and seeds, COMRAP is expected to reach about three million smallholder farmers in eight countries within the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA): Burundi, Ethiopia, Malawi, Rwanda, Swaziland, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. COMRAP is a two-year project implemented by the Alliance for Commodity Trade in Eastern and Southern Africa (ACTESA), a specialized agency of COMESA, and is funded by the European Union Food Facility Program. As a facilitating partner in the project, IFDC is implementing the agro-dealer development component of COMRAP in association with the Agricultural Market Development Trust. Agro-dealers play a crucial role in the delivery of inputs to farmers and are critical to the success of the project.
Kyrgyzstan Agro-Input Enterprise Development Follow-On Project, 2010-2012
The Follow-On project is countering setbacks to previous agricultural intensification successes in the wake of Kyrgyz political and social disruptions in the spring of 2010. The Follow-On project is assisting Kyrgyzstan to recover to 2009 wheat output highs. To help the country produce one million metric tons of wheat in 2011, the project is working with 20,000 farmers as they plant improved wheat varieties and 80,000 other farmers as they adopt “best practices” in farming and animal care. Mirroring successful predecessor projects (2001-2010), IFDC is mobilizing and supporting private enterprise farming and commodity chains that offer the greatest potential to improve sustainable agricultural production and increase employment opportunities, targeting the country’s southern regions. The project is funded by USAID.
Privatization of Rwanda’s Fertilizer Import and Distribution System (PReFER), 2010-2015
The Rwandan government has enlisted IFDC’s assistance to support the private sector’s increased involvement in the fertilizer industry. The government wants the private sector to eventually take over the responsibility for fertilizer importation, distribution and sale to farmers. Funded by USAID, IFDC will provide technical and business assistance through PReFER training programs to develop and professionalize fertilizer importers, distributors and retailers. IFDC identifies policies that support the private sector’s involvement in the fertilizer market and contributes to the development of a sustainable supply system. A core project activity is the development of a Fertilizer Business Incubation Center, which will offer business support to emerging private sector entrepreneurs involved in fertilizer supply and serve as a one-stop resource center for all fertilizer sector stakeholders.
IFDC is a public international organization addressing critical issues such as international food security, the alleviation of global hunger and poverty, environmental protection and the promotion of economic development and self-sufficiency.
IFDC is governed by an international board of directors with representation from developed and developing countries. The nonprofit Center is supported by various bilateral and multilateral aid agencies, private foundations and national governments.
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