Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Improving Food Security Information in Africa

For the sub-Saharan African countries to fully achieve their potential for rice production it is critical to have adequate and reliable information on their rice economies, to help formulate appropriate strategies and policies. 

AfricaRice launched an initiative in December 2007 as part of the Japan-AfricaRice Emergency Rice Initiative (ERI), which was designed to improve the timely availability, reliability and relevance of rice statistics and information needed for quality rice research, evidence-based policy formulation, and monitoring and evaluation of rice related investments in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). 

The initiative was implemented in collaboration with the National Agricultural Research Systems (NARS), the National Agricultural Statistics Services (NASS), the African Development Bank (AfDB), Agriculture, Hydrology, Meteorology (Regional Research Centre) (AGRHYMET) and other regional stakeholders. The project worked with NARS and NASS in 21 member countries of the Coalition for African Rice Development (CARD): Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Togo, and Uganda. 

Building on the success of that project, a new 3-year project has been launched with financial and technical support from Japan's Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) to improve the food security information system in Africa through the generation of quality rice data and information.

This will add value to the existing endeavors undertaken so far towards the goal of improving the availability and reliability of rice statistics in support of the objective of the CARD initiative.

The project will consist mainly of three main activities relating to: 1) the development of a survey methodology to be used to conduct rice surveys in the participating countries, 2) NARS capacity building to acquire the required skills to implement rice surveys using the method that will be introduced by the project, and 3) conduct surveys in selected countries.

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