West africa

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Africa RISING Sustainable Intensification of Crop - Livestock Farming Systems in the Guinea and Sudano Savannah Zone of West Africa

Introduction[edit | edit source]

The project is operating in the Guinea and Sudano−Sahelian zones of northern Ghana and southern Mali. In Phase 1 (2011–2016), research activities aimed at establishing the best-bet technologies that would deliver adoptable development solutions to smallholder farm families were tested and validated through participatory research approaches together with the farming communities. Phase 2 of the project (2016−2021) will combine continuity with evolutionary change to ensure that the technologies identified in Phase 1 drive wider adoption at scale through effective development partnerships. The project envisions that, by 2021, over 100,000 smallholder farm households in Ghana and Mali will benefit from Africa RISING technologies. Based on the experiences and lessons learned from Phase 1, expected outcomes of the Africa RISING West Africa Project in Phase 2 are:

  • Outcome 1: Farmers and farming communities in the project area are practicing more productive, resilient, profitable, and sustainably intensified crop–livestock systems linked to markets.
  • Outcome 2: More farmers and farm families are adopting technologies and practices to improve nutrition, food and feed safety, postharvest handling, and value addition.
  • Outcome 3: Farmers and other value chain actors have greater and equitable access to production assets and markets (input and output) through enabling institutions and policies.
  • Outcome 4: Effective partnerships are built with farmers, local communities, and research and development partners in the private and public sectors to ensure delivery and uptake at scale of sustainable intensification technologies, innovations, and practices.

Project sites[edit | edit source]

The project is implemented in a total of 25 communities – the Northern, Upper West and Upper East regions of Ghana. In Mali, activities are implemented in 10 villages in the Bougouni - Yanfolila and Koutiala Districts of the Sikasso Region in southern Mali. From 2015, and for various reasons, Yorobougoula village (in Yanfolila District) will no longer be part of Africa RISING intervention villages thereby reducing the intervention villages to nine.

Smallimage Africa-RISING-intervention-communities-in-Ghana.jpg | | File:Smallimage Mali map action sites.jpg

Click on image to enlarge.

Project interventions[edit | edit source]

Through a participatory and demand-driven approach to research, project partners are implementing adaptive research on various technologies and working with development organizations to get them into the hands of farmers at scale. The activities include testing and disseminating: (i) improved crop varieties (drought and Striga resistant food and feed crops); (ii) appropriate agronomic practices (planting density, cereal−legume rotations and

intercropping, multiple cropping, increasing cropping cycles within a season, efficient use of input resources and agroforestry); (iii) climate-smart land management practices (conservation agriculture, physical barriers to soil and water loss, in-situ water harvesting, and soil cover crops); (iv) improved animal husbandry practices (semi-intensive and intensive management); and (v) technologies for reducing pre- and postharvest losses. The project also facilitates linkages between farmers and input/output markets. The objective is to build well-integrated and productive crop and livestock enterprises that minimize natural resource degradation.

To diversify household nutrition, the project is introducing new nutritious food preparation techniques based on locally available ingredients for household members, particularly children. Nutrition field schools are being used to promote knowledge exchange on best practices for processing and storage of cereals, legumes, and vegetable-based foods.

Group and individual trainings are conducted to strengthen the capacities of all actors (farmers, research and extension staff, input and output dealers, and policy makers). Academic training at the MSc and PhD level is applied to address important knowledge gaps, and to develop the “next” generation of scientists. Information exchange is being promoted through field days, radio programs, exchange visits, and video shows.

The project gives special attention to gender equality and underprivileged groups within the society. Enabling policies and institutions to improve access to input and output markets, formation of effective partnerships, and access to knowledge and information are advocated for, especially through operational level R4D/Innovation platforms.

Technologies validated by the project during Phase 1.

Broad category Validated flagship technologies Validation sites
New crops and varieties to overcome existing biotic and abiotic stresses and improve productivity per unit land area New, high-yielding crop varieties, e.g.:
* Drought and Striga tolerant, extra-early, and early-maturing maize,
* Nutrient-efficient rice
* Aflatoxin resistant groundnut
* Sorghum hybrids
* Early-maturing cowpea
* Dual-purpose cowpea
* Short-duration soybean
* Medium soybean
* High yielding and disease-resistant varieties of vegetables (okra, roselle, tomato, eggplant, and pepper)
Ghana (Northern, Upper West, and Upper East regions) and Mali (Bougouni and Koutiala districts)
Agronomic practices to increase grain and fodder yield and soil nitrogen content Cereal−legume intercropping
Cereal−legume rotations
Dual-purpose food legumes
Cereal−vegetable intercropping
Ghana (Northern, Upper West, and Upper East regions) and Mali (Bougouni and Koutiala districts)
Integrated soil fertility management as a cost-effective approach to replenish soil fertility Optimized N and P fertilizer rates
Fertilizer micro-dosing
Livestock corralling for manure/urine
Cereal−legume rotations
Cereal−legume intercropping
Ghana (Northern, Upper West, and Upper East regions) and Mali (Bougouni and Koutiala districts)
Land management technologies to reduce soil loss and enhance water utilization In-situ water harvesting
Physical barriers to reduce soil erosion
Contour bunding with trees
Ghana (Northern, and Upper East regions) and Mali (Bougouni and Koutiala districts)
Agroforestry technologies to increase fruit, vegetable, and feed production per unit land area and conserve soil and water New provenances of indigenous trees (Adansonia digitata, Ziziphus mauritania, Tamarindus indica)
Pruning management
Contour bunding with trees
Mali (Bougouni and Koutiala districts)
Improved livestock feed, and feeding, housing, health and breeding management packages Sheep/goat flock feeding
Sheep/goat health care
Housing for poultry
Guinea fowl brooding management
Stover quality improvement
Ghana (Northern, and Upper East regions)
Pre- and postharvest technologies to reduce food waste and improve food safety Grain storage in PICS bags and plastic drums
Aflasafe application in maize and groundnut fields
Ghana (Northern, and Upper East regions)

Research plans[edit | edit source]

Phase 2 research-in-development plans[edit | edit source]

Phase 1 research plans[edit | edit source]

Key Documents[edit | edit source]

[edit | edit source]

Partners[edit | edit source]

Partners meetings[edit | edit source]

  • click here to view comprehensive events list





>>>>>>>>>>>+ PPT presentation: Activities at Flola technology park >>>>>>>>>>>+ PPT presentation: Activities at Koutiala area

>>>>>>>>>>>+ PPT presentation: Africa RISING Mali progress update


  • 15 August - Ghana Upper West Region research team meeting
  • 14 August - Ghana Upper East Region research team meeting
  • 13 August - Ghana Northern Region research team meeting
  • 18 June - Ghana Upper West Region research team meeting
  • 22 April- Ghana research team meeting
  • 21 February- Review Meeting for 2014 Work-Packages

Innovation Platforms/R4D Platforms[edit | edit source]



  • 18 December 2014 - Bongo District (Upper East Region, Ghana) R4D platform launch
  • 16 December 2014 - Kassena Nankana East District (Upper East Region, Ghana) R4D platform launch

Mid-Term External Evaluation (2014)[edit | edit source]

Reports and Documents[edit | edit source]

*Click header above to view the final reports published by the project on CG Space

Adjunct reports from project partners

Training materials[edit | edit source]

Protocols, questionnaires, PhD proposals[edit | edit source]

*Click header above to view the research protocols

Posters and presentations[edit | edit source]

*Click header above to view the latest posters & presentations

News and Updates[edit | edit source]

*Click header above to view the latest news and updates media type="custom" key="17733244"

Key contacts[edit | edit source]

  • Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon, Manager Africa RISING West Africa and East / Southern Africa Projects - I.Hoeschle-Zeledon(at)cgiar.org
  • Fred Kizito, Chief Scientist Africa RISING West Africa Project – F.Kizito(at)cgiar.org
  • Birhanu Zemadim, Scientist ICRISAT/Africa RISING Coordinator Mali - Z.Birhanu(at)cgiar.org
  • Wilhelmina Ofori-Duah, Research Communication Specialist, Africa RISING West Africa Project - W.Ofori-Duah (at) cgiar.org

media type="custom" key="28618679"[edit | edit source]

Yorobougoula (in Yanfolila District)