Monday, April 29, 2013

African Development Bank delegation visits AfricaRice

 African Development Bank delegation visits AfricaRice
 to discuss implementation of Strategic Crops initiative

A high-level delegation from the African Development Bank (AfDB) visited AfricaRice on 26 April to discuss on the progress made in the implementation of the “Support to Agricultural Research for Development of Strategic Crops in Africa (SARD-SC)” initiative.

Launched in 2012, SARD-SC is a 5-year, multi-CGIAR center initiative funded by AfDB. It seeks to enhance the productivity and income derived from cassava, maize, rice, and wheat – four of the six commodities that African Heads of States, through the Comprehensive African Agricultural Development Program, have defined as strategic crops for Africa. Its overall objective is to enhance food and nutrition security and contribute to poverty reduction in the AfDB’s low income Regional Member Countries (RMCs).

The initiative is being implemented by three Africa-based CGIAR centers – AfricaRice for the rice value chain component; the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) for the wheat value chain component; and the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) for the cassava and maize value chain components. IITA is also the executing agency for the initiative. The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) is responsible for capacity building for farmers’ organizations across the four value chains.

The rice component of the SARD-SC initiative aims to contribute to poverty reduction and enhanced food security through value chain development across Africa. Ten countries are included in the initiative: Benin, Côte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Madagascar, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania and Uganda. New technologies and innovations will be developed through Taskforces. These comprise NARS collaborators from participating countries and focus on one of five main intervention areas: breeding, agronomy, gender, processing/value addition and policy. Through the Taskforces, new technologies and innovations will be introduced as good agricultural practice (GAP) baskets in Rice Sector Development Hubs.

Dr Jonas Chianu, Principal Agricultural Economist,
African Development Bank (AfDB), 
speaks during his recent visit to AfricaRice

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