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CASFESA Project
Results, Lessons, Gaps, Opportunities
and Challenges
Moti Jaleta, Tilaye Teklewold, Alemu Tolemariam,
Sime...
Outline
• Background of the existing cropping
system
• Principles of Conservation Agriculture(CA)
• CASFESA project overvi...
CA components and current farmer practices
• Zero/minimum tillage
• Crop association (intercropping/rotation)
• Residue re...
Current farm practices (from baseline survey)
District N Total maize area(ha)
Maize under
intercropping(ha) %
South Achefer 292 176.71 4.0 2
Jabitehnan 278 142.59 6.25 ...
Season South Achefer Jabitehnan
2010/112011/12 2012/13Area rotated(ha)
%
Area rotated(ha)
%
Maize Maize Maize 55.89 31.63 ...
Minimum Tillage (one-Pass) with no
residue cover and mono-cropping
Conventional tillage
Both practices are not sustainable...
Crop Residue Utilization
• No crop residue retention practices.
• Maize Stover has a multiple purposes- use competition
8
CASFESA Project
Goal: To Secure Household Food Security by Improving
Crop Productivity through CA Principles
 Operational...
What CASFESA Project did
• Randomly selected 15 treatment and 15 control villages
in both districts
• Set CA demo plots on...
What CASFESA Project did
• Organized farmers’ field days where farmers
from treatment villages participate and inquire
on ...
Demo plots Design
1m 10 m 1m 10m 1m
Zero tillage +
intercropping
Conventional
tillage +
intercropping
10m
1m
Sole maize +
...
Field Day Participants
District Sex 2012/13 2013/14 2014/15 Total
South Achefer
M 265 264 48 577
F 7 16 2 25
T 272 280 50 ...
Farmers’ Field Days
Economic Return of CA Technologies
(South Achefer)
Items
Total plots
(N=590)
Min- tillage plots
(N=158)
Conv. tillage plots
(N=432)
Mean Mean Mean
Revenue
Revenue from maize...
Identifying Potential Recommendation Domains for CA
(Ethiopia)
• Total Area under cultivation: 17,792,600 ha
• High Biophy...
Challenges
18
Free grazing vs. crop residue retention/management
Challenges (2)
Conventional Shilshalo/madager
– Not compatible with CA principles
– Not suitable for intercropping
– Reduc...
Challenges (3)
Limited availability of improved legume
varieties suitable to West Gojam zone
– Productivity
– Disease resi...
Challenges (4)
Maize plant/seed is easily exposed to birds when rain stops for
long period after planting.
21
However, it’s best forage source during
the wet season for cut-and-carry feeding
practices.
22
Farmers’ field: South Achef...
Improved seed + chemical fertilizer
+ minimum tillage
+ glyphosate + primagram + hand-weeding
Farmers’ field: South Achefe...
Opportunities
• The on-going soil and water conservation
structures/practices by MoA.
– Community by-laws restricted free ...
Summary
• CA is economically viable if farmers are given as
alternative technology.
• Current practices of minimum tillage...
26
ThankS!
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CASFESA closure: Results, Lessons, Gaps, Opportunities and Challenges--M. Jaleta et al

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Presentation at a one-day workshop on February 23, 2015, convened to take stock of the Conservation Agriculture and Smallholder Farmers in East and Southern Africa (CASFESA) pilot project. CASFESA scientists share experience after three years of implementation in South Achefer and Jebitehnan Districts of Amhara Region, Northern Ethiopia, from June 2012, ending in March 2015. Funded by the European Union through the International Fund for Agricultural Development, CASFESA aimed at increasing food security and incomes of poor smallholder farmers through sustainable intensification of mixed, cereal-based systems.

The project will leave a rich legacy, including:
• adaptation and demonstration of CA-based technologies on selected farmer plots;
• enhancing pro-poor and gender-sensitive targeting of CA-based interventions;
• improving the delivery of information, including on technologies and market opportunities to smallholders, as well as developing policy options and recommendations that favor these technologies; and,
• enhancing the capacity of research, and development interventions, for project stakeholders.

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CASFESA closure: Results, Lessons, Gaps, Opportunities and Challenges--M. Jaleta et al

  1. 1. CASFESA Project Results, Lessons, Gaps, Opportunities and Challenges Moti Jaleta, Tilaye Teklewold, Alemu Tolemariam, Simegnew Tamir, Yeshiwas Tilahun and Habtemariam Asefa 23rd Febrauary2015 Bahir Dar, Ethiopia
  2. 2. Outline • Background of the existing cropping system • Principles of Conservation Agriculture(CA) • CASFESA project overview • Main Achievements/Results/Lessons • Challenges and Opportunities • Summary
  3. 3. CA components and current farmer practices • Zero/minimum tillage • Crop association (intercropping/rotation) • Residue retention or permanent soil cover
  4. 4. Current farm practices (from baseline survey)
  5. 5. District N Total maize area(ha) Maize under intercropping(ha) % South Achefer 292 176.71 4.0 2 Jabitehnan 278 142.59 6.25 4 Total 570 319.30 10.25 3 South Achefer district = Main crop intercropped with maize = Rapeseed Jabitehnan district = Main crop intercropped with maize = Common bean Total maize area under intercropping(2012/13) Current farm practices _intercropping
  6. 6. Season South Achefer Jabitehnan 2010/112011/12 2012/13Area rotated(ha) % Area rotated(ha) % Maize Maize Maize 55.89 31.63 42.88 30.07 Others Others Maize 54.94 31.09 37.65 26.40 Maize Others Maize 48.44 27.41 43.22 30.31 Others Maize Maize 17.44 9.87 18.85 13.22 Total area under maize(ha) 176.71 142.59 South Achefer district: Main crop rotated with maize = Finger millet Jabitehnan district: Main crop rotated with maize = Pepper Current farm practices _ Rotation
  7. 7. Minimum Tillage (one-Pass) with no residue cover and mono-cropping Conventional tillage Both practices are not sustainable. Tillage Practices South Achefer: 28% of maize plots were under by minimum tillage
  8. 8. Crop Residue Utilization • No crop residue retention practices. • Maize Stover has a multiple purposes- use competition 8
  9. 9. CASFESA Project Goal: To Secure Household Food Security by Improving Crop Productivity through CA Principles  Operational in Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi  Funded by EU through IFAD  Implemented with the collaboration of CIMMYT,ARARI and District agricultural offices.
  10. 10. What CASFESA Project did • Randomly selected 15 treatment and 15 control villages in both districts • Set CA demo plots on plots donated by 2-hosting farmers in each of the treatment villages • Trained farmers and development agents on CA practices (demo-plot management and record keeping) • Provided seed and fertilizer (with agreement to compensate for any yield loss due to technology failure)
  11. 11. What CASFESA Project did • Organized farmers’ field days where farmers from treatment villages participate and inquire on benefits and costs of CA • Invited agro-dealers to field days organized in their vicinity • Continued similar activities for three years and encouraged farmers to try the technology on their own maize plots
  12. 12. Demo plots Design 1m 10 m 1m 10m 1m Zero tillage + intercropping Conventional tillage + intercropping 10m 1m Sole maize + zero tillage Sole maize + zero tillage 10m 1m
  13. 13. Field Day Participants District Sex 2012/13 2013/14 2014/15 Total South Achefer M 265 264 48 577 F 7 16 2 25 T 272 280 50 602 Jabitehnan M 656 522 306 1484 F 49 152 122 323 T 705 674 428 1807
  14. 14. Farmers’ Field Days
  15. 15. Economic Return of CA Technologies (South Achefer)
  16. 16. Items Total plots (N=590) Min- tillage plots (N=158) Conv. tillage plots (N=432) Mean Mean Mean Revenue Revenue from maize production (Birr/ha)a 8,833.22 10,739.93*** 8,135.86 Variable costs Seed cost (Birr/ha) 487.89 648.84** 420.53 Fertilizer cost (Birr/ha) 3,811.11 4,619.12*** 3,515.59 Herbicide cost (Birr/ha) 233.91 898.71*** 0.00 Labor cost (Birr/ha) 1,467.16 1,145.10 1,584.95*** Oxen-days (Birr/ha) 705.84 278.32 860.47*** Total Variable costs (Birr/ha)b 6,571.94 7,370.25*** 6,275.10 Gross margin (Birr/ha)(a-b) 2,216.73 3,229.74*** 1,846.23 Gross return on investment (Birr/ha)(a/b) 1.34 1.46 1.30 Gross margin analysis in maize production by tillage Note: Average maize grain price was 4.00Birr/kg; opportunity cost of labor and oxen-power was assumed as 20 Birr/AE/day and 50 Birr/pair of oxen/ha, respectively. ***, **, and * are significantly different from the other group mean at 1%, 5% and 10%, respectively
  17. 17. Identifying Potential Recommendation Domains for CA (Ethiopia) • Total Area under cultivation: 17,792,600 ha • High Biophysical potential and High Socioeconomic potential 821,006 ha (i.e., 4.6%) Targeting is crucial!! Source: Tesfaye et al. (2015). Environmental Management. 55(2):330-346.
  18. 18. Challenges 18 Free grazing vs. crop residue retention/management
  19. 19. Challenges (2) Conventional Shilshalo/madager – Not compatible with CA principles – Not suitable for intercropping – Reduce plant density 19
  20. 20. Challenges (3) Limited availability of improved legume varieties suitable to West Gojam zone – Productivity – Disease resistant – Planting date of legume crops with maize is not well identified/known.
  21. 21. Challenges (4) Maize plant/seed is easily exposed to birds when rain stops for long period after planting. 21
  22. 22. However, it’s best forage source during the wet season for cut-and-carry feeding practices. 22 Farmers’ field: South Achefer Grass weeds are common problems in Minimum tillage maize fields. Maize plant_ Minimum Tillage
  23. 23. Improved seed + chemical fertilizer + minimum tillage + glyphosate + primagram + hand-weeding Farmers’ field: South Achefer Primagram doesn’t allow legume intercropping.
  24. 24. Opportunities • The on-going soil and water conservation structures/practices by MoA. – Community by-laws restricted free grazing on conserved plots. • Existence of Cooperative Union/private agro- dealers for input supply • Prior introduction of zero tillage practice in South Achefer
  25. 25. Summary • CA is economically viable if farmers are given as alternative technology. • Current practices of minimum tillage has to be revised in such away that it ensures sustainability. • In order to scale up CA principles, institutional arrangements meant for easing input accessibility and affordability need to be improved . • Continued research on CA principles specifically on generating suitable legume crops technologies in the area meant for maize intercropping.
  26. 26. 26 ThankS!

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