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Session 2 2 Development of the Best Intercropping Practices Decision Support Tool

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Cassava intercropping with Sweet potato (CIS) trials aim to evaluate the land equivalent ratio of cassava - sweet potato intercropping systems, and methods to optimize intercropping practices for maximal revenue.
The CIS trials (2018) have been set up in Zanzibar in 8 clusters in Zanzibar. The study ascertains recommended plant densities and appropriate timing of introducing sweet potato as associated crop. Findings confirm that (i) cassava-sweet potato intercropping systems have LERs exceeding 1, and that (ii) farmers’ practice, with simultaneous planting of both crops at reduced densities of 10,000 sweet potato vines per hectare is optimal. Further yield increases can be achieved through fertilizer application, and the relative cost and revenue from both crops should be considered in decision-making on intercropping cassava.
Cassava intercrop maize (CIM) recommends intensification options in cassava-maize intercropping systems. A comparison of our recommendation with the best performing plot at an individual site showed that for 31% of the farms (where maize was already harvested) this advice was correct and 9% would have lost money due to the investment in fertilizer. The tool proved to be conservative, often not recommending investment in fertilizer where this would have increased revenue.
For the DST version of 2019, we will improve on the indicators for maize and review with our partners whether the value cost ratio should be less conservative, or its level be set by farmers. Increasing the true positive rate (correctly recommend investment when this is profitable) comes along with increases in false positives (recommending investment in fertilizer when not profitable).

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Session 2 2 Development of the Best Intercropping Practices Decision Support Tool

  1. 1. Development of the Best Intercropping Practices (IC) Decision Support Tool (DST) – Version2 www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org
  2. 2. Overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Best Intercropping Practices DST: 1. Introduction (Veronica Uzokwe): • The IC use case • Learnings from the baseline • Summary of year 2 achievements 2. Field activities (Mark Tokula and Haji Saleh): • Field activities: Intercropping trials • Field trial results 3. Advances with the DST development (Christine Kreye): • Modelling framework • Year1 – Year2 validation results • The Decision Support Tool 4. Validation exercises (Chris Okoli and Wiston Mwombeki): • First impressions from ongoing validation exercises • Next steps and additional data needs
  3. 3. Overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Best Intercropping Practices DST: 1. Introduction (Veronica Uzokwe): • The IC use case • Learnings from the baseline • Summary of year 2 achievements 2. Field activities (Mark Tokula and Haji Saleh): • Field activities: Intercropping trials • Field trial results 3. Advances with the DST development (Christine Kreye): • Modelling framework • Year1 – Year2 validation results • The Decision Support Tool 4. Validation exercises (Chris Okoli and Wiston Mwombeki): • First impressions from ongoing validation exercises • Next steps and additional data needs
  4. 4. Introduction www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Best Intercropping Practices DSTs: • Specific purpose: recommend optimal time of planting, crop density and fertilizer application for a maize (NG) / sweet potato (Zanzibar) intercrop to increase overall productivity • Requested by: FCI (TZ) and 2SCALE (NG) • Other partners: SG2000 (NG) • Intended users: Extension Agents (EAs) supporting cassava growers • Expected benefit: Intercrop yield increased by 2 tonnes/ha and cassava yield not affected or increased by 0.5 tonnes/ha realized by 35,100 HHs, with the support of 124 extension agents, on a total area of 17,550 ha, generating a total value of US$3,948,750 • Current version: V2: uses expert knowledge to estimate current crop performance and revenue based on default or user-defined prices of roots and intercrop produce to recommend best planting time, planting density and fertilizer regime for a preferred set of varieties, maximizing overall net revenue or intercrop yield without affecting cassava yield • Approach: Decision tree model based on analysis of field trial data • Input required: Cropping objective (maximize total revenue or maximize cassava yield), prices of intercrop produce (maize cobs (NG) / sweet potato (Zanzibar)) and cassava roots, willingness to invest in fertilizer and knowledge of field history • Interface: Paper-based decision tree, including guidelines for simple calculations to estimate profitability
  5. 5. Principles of the Best Intercropping Practices Tool www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org 1. Obtain details on current practice 2. Identify alternative options within given constraints 3. Evaluate to what extent the performance of alternative options is location-dependent, based on analysis of multilocational field trial data 4. If so, identify GIS (or other) predictor variables to estimate location-specific effects of interventions on intercrop yield and cassava root yield 5. Convert yield effects to changes in gross revenue based on prices of intercrop produce and cassava roots (default values or user input) 6. Calculate net revenue (subtract cost of fertilizer) 7. Recommend optimal intercrop density, relative time of planting (Zanzibar only) and fertilizer regime (if willing to invest in fertilizer) that maximizes cassava yield or overall net revenue using a decision tree model The IC-DST is developed based on following steps and principles:
  6. 6. Principles of the Best Intercropping Practices Tool www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org What is current practice? – learnings from the RC survey Tanzania (Zanzibar) 38% of cassava is intercropped, of which 45% by sweet potato (45%), planted at the same time (67%) or ± 2 weeks (29%). 0% of farmers apply fertilizer to the sweet potato intercrop, and 62% commercialize at least half of sweet potato produce. Main objective is maximizing land use efficiency. Nigeria 68% of cassava is intercropped, of which 75% by maize, planted 2 weeks earlier (33%) or at the same time (30%). 43% of farmers apply fertilizer to the maize intercrop, and 94% commercialize at least half of the maize produce. Main objective is faster access to food and income. Need picture here!
  7. 7. Principles of the Best Intercropping Practices Tool www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org What are the alternative options? 2. Optimize the relative time of planting of the intercrop • Reduce competition for light for the cassava crop • Optimal time of planting will depend on the cropping objectives 3. Apply fertilizer • Increased availability of nutrients (reduced belowground competition) • Intercrop as an entry point for fertilizer application to cassava (benefits from residual effects) • Modify the composition of the fertilizer regime to the specific cropping objectives 1. Modify (increase) the crop density: • Optimize land use efficiency • Choose best variety with minimal above- and belowground competition effect
  8. 8. Principles of the Best Intercropping Practices Tool www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Modelling framework Are the effects of density and fertilizer application dependent on field conditions? Evaluate through multilocational field testing covering target environments Develop decision tree models Can we predict these effects based on expert knowledge?
  9. 9. V1 version of the IC DST (end of 2017) www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org
  10. 10. Overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Best Intercropping Practices DST: 1. Introduction (Veronica Uzokwe): • The IC use case • Learnings from the baseline • Summary of year 2 achievements 2. Field activities (Mark Tokula and Haji Saleh): • Field activities: Intercropping trials • Field trial results 3. Advances with the DST development (Christine Kreye): • Modelling framework • Year1 – Year2 validation results • The Decision Support Tool 4. Validation exercises (Chris Okoli and Wiston Mwombeki): • First impressions from ongoing validation exercises • Next steps and additional data needs
  11. 11. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Current overview of trials and status of trials Nigeria CIM 2016 CIM 2017 Zone planted harvested maize harvested cassava planted harvested maize harvested cassava South East 85 73 73 110 99 99 South West 47 45 44 66 39 47 Total 132 118 117 176 138 146
  12. 12. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Harvest and establishment of 2 sets of trials based on step-wise intensification CIM-2 trials:  Planted in 2016  Harvested in 2017 CIM-3 and CIM-4 trials:  Planted in 2017  Harvested in 2018 Overview of year 2-3 trials
  13. 13. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria Impressions and learnings from the field – some pictures www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org • Farmers generally prefer intercropping maize with cassava in southwest Nigeria as they see it as a means to getting some quick income while waiting for cassava, which is partially reinvested to maintain the cassava plots. • Farmers do not see any negative effect of planting maize with cassava but noticed that the planting position of cassava relative to maize is crucial to attain high benefits in a cassava-maize intercrop.
  14. 14. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria Impressions and learnings from the field – some pictures www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org
  15. 15. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Model: yield ~ 0 + MaizeLevel + Fertilizer + (0 + Fertilizer|fieldID) Results 2017-2018 trials Cassava root yield (2018) = 40,000 maize plants/ha = 20,000 maize plants/ha Fertilizer Maize Fertilizer = Fertilizer regime targeting maize crop Cassava Fertilizer = Fertilizer regime targeting cassava crop Yield penalty of ~ 1 t/ha when intercropping with maize at high density vs. low density. No difference between the two fertilizer regimes. Both increase yield by ~3 t/ha.
  16. 16. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Model: yield ~ 0 + MaizeLevel*Fertilizer + maizeVariety + (0 + Fertilizer|fieldID) No reward in additional maize cobs from increased planting density without fertilizer application. Higher cob yields when targeting fertilizer to the maize crop. Results 2018-2019 trials Maize cob yield (2017) = 40,000 maize plants/ha = 20,000 maize plants/ha Fertilizer Maize Fertilizer = Fertilizer regime targeting maize crop Cassava Fertilizer = Fertilizer regime targeting cassava crop
  17. 17. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Relating variation in yield response to maize height… Recursive partitioning for simple decision rule: • Control maize is a good indicator to distinguish response classes • All fields were responsive; only 1 field with maize height < 50cm, only 10 fields with maize height > 150cm • Highest response if control maize height = 100-150 cm
  18. 18. Intercropping Trials - Nigeria www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Factors 2016 - 2017 2017 - 2018 Cassava density High cassava density → higher cassava yield Only high density cassava throughout Cassava density Cassava yield not affected by maize density Slight yield penalty of cassava (~ 1t /ha) at high maize density Maize density High maize density → always higher cob yield Low maize density → safer without fertilizer Fertilizer F1 is suitable in both crops confirmed Intensification steps High density maize and cassava without fertilizer → high density crops with fertilizer Low density maize + high/low density cassava without fertilizer → high density crops with fertilizer Indicator maize height Suitable to indicate fertilizer application Not confirmed (see validation exercises) Maize variety Higher yields of white maize in Benue Same trend in validation exercises Comparison of 2017-2018 and 2019-2019 results
  19. 19. Intercropping Trials - Zanzibar www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Evaluate effects of planting density, planting time and fertilizer application on sweet potato:
  20. 20. Intercropping Trials - Zanzibar www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Current overview of trials and status of trials Zanzibar CIS 2017 CIS 2018 planted harvested sweetpotato harvested cassava planted harvested sweetpotato harvested cassava Unguja 75 66 64 75 68 ongoing Pemba 25 22 22 25 17 ongoing Total 100 88 86 100 85
  21. 21. Intercropping Trials - Zanzibar Impressions and learnings from the field – some pictures www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org SWP monocrop – no fertilizer SWP monocrop + fertilizer SWP intercrop simultaneous planting + fertilizer SWP intercrop planted @ 2 weeks delay + fertilizer SWP intercrop planted @ 2 weeks delay – no fertilizer Cassava monocrop – no fertilizer
  22. 22. Intercropping Trials - Zanzibar Impressions and learnings from the field – some pictures www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org
  23. 23. Intercropping Trials - Zanzibar Results 2017-2018 trials www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org On-farm trials with 80 farmers across Unguja and Pemba Sweet potato yield 2017 Conclusions from 2017 sweet potato harvest Sweet potato suffers somewhat from competition with cassava, with yield losses of 5 – 15% (higher in high-yielding fields). Delayed planting of sweet potato causes yield reductions of 0 – 45%. Increasing density is not advantageous for a sweet potato intercrop. A density of 10,000 vines/ha is recommended. Effects of density and relative planting time depend on time of planting and amount of rainfall received.
  24. 24. Intercropping Trials - Zanzibar Results 2017-2018 trials www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org On-farm trials with 80 farmers across Unguja and Pemba Sweet potato yield 2017 Cassava yield 2018 Negative effects of sweet potato intercropping on cassava yield observed, and similar (-6.6 t/ha ~ -37%) in both systems. Significant variation between sites in effects of intercropping on cassava yield, varying between -5% and -60% (LER = 1.4 – 1.9).
  25. 25. Intercropping Trials - Zanzibar Results 2017-2018 trials www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org On-farm trials with 80 farmers across Unguja and Pemba Sweet potato yield 2018 Competition effects of cassava on sweet potato are more severe than in 2017! with yield reduction of ~30% if planted simultaneously, and ~50% if sweet potato planting is delayed by 2 weeks (very consistent across locations). Cassava harvest planned in February – March 2018. If cassava yield reductions remain around 40%, then LER = 1.1 – 1.5. Tested technologies (increased density and delayed introduction of sweet potato) do not result in yield increases. Farmer’s most common practice (simultaneous planting of a low density sweet potato crop) appears best-performing. Cassava – sweet potato intercropping is only sensible if the farmer wishes to maximize land use efficiency, and grow both crops with priority to the sweet potato. The farmer must be willing to accept substantial losses in cassava yield. Use of fertilizer to increase yield could be further tested.
  26. 26. Overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Best Intercropping Practices DST: 1. Introduction (Veronica Uzokwe): • The IC use case • Learnings from the baseline • Summary of year 2 achievements 2. Field activities (Mark Tokula and Haji Saleh): • Field activities: Intercropping trials • Field trial results 3. Advances with the DST development (Christine Kreye): • Modelling framework • Year1 – Year2 validation results • The Decision Support Tool 4. Validation exercises (Chris Okoli and Wiston Mwombeki): • First impressions from ongoing validation exercises • Next steps and additional data needs
  27. 27. How are these results fed into the DST? www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Nigeria: 1. There is a small yield penalty for cassava roots of about 1 t/ha by intensification in maize 2. There appears to be higher uncertainty and fluctuation in cassava root than maize cob prices => also base V2 on responses of maize 3. Lessons from the first trials and validation exercises for maize • Farmers value fresh maize cobs for the market • Evaluate responses by cob size • Not all LGAs have a market for fresh cobs => include dry cobs int V2 • Large cobs fetch highest prices; base decisions on this fraction • Use trials of 2017 (CIM-3 and CIM-4) for V1 development 4. Response to higher planting density of large maize cobs is not site-specific and low (for the selected maize variety) => low density will be the blanket recommendation for maize. 5. The height and appearance of maize (without fertilizer application) at tasselling can be used as indicator for the response to fertilizer. 6. The maize fertilizer regime (F1) is preferred in all situations (over F2). 7. Maize cob prices and fertilizer availability and cost will drive the decision-making in the DST.
  28. 28. Packaging in a tool for field use www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org How to make this framework available for quick and easy use? IC-DST packaged as a simple paper-based decision tree with inputs: 1. Variety recommendation: • erect cassava • early maturing maize (90-95 days) 2. High planting densities • cassava: 12,500 plants ha-1 • maize: 40,000 plants ha-1 if fertilizer is applied / high fertility conditions, 20,000 plants ha-1 otherwise 3. Fertilizer regime: • target the maize crop • cassava benefits as well 4. Fertilizer recommendation: • site-specific • use farmers’ experience with their maize crop (plant height at tasselling) 5. Profitability of fertilizer application: • based on expected additional large maize cobs • look-up table [cost of fertilizer x price of large cobs] • formula for easy calculation
  29. 29. Packaging in a tool for field use www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Can the maize height be used to predict fertilizer use? Do measured maize height and farmers’ estimates match? → usually correct for tall maize → difficult to distinguish medium and low height Numbers / category Previous maize height Low Medium Tall Total % correct low 0 3 9 12 % 0 3 8 11 0 medium 3 28 18 49 % 3 26 17 46 57 tall 0 6 40 46 % 0 6 37 43 87 Total 3 37 67 107 % 3 35 63 100 Measured maize height in LM
  30. 30. Packaging in a tool for field use www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org How to capture maize performance without input use? 1 2 3 4 5 Visualization of expected maize performance (if grown without fertilizer input) Likely unresponsive to sole fertilizer (improve soil fertility: apply manure) Recommend fertilizer application Standard recommendation No economically justified response
  31. 31. How are these results fed into the DST? www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Zanzibar: Sweet potato 1. Sweet potato suffers from cassava, yield losses of 5 – 30% (higher in high-yielding fields), less than observed in other studies. 2. Delayed planting of sweet potato causes yield reductions of 0 – 50%. → Plant sweet potato and cassava at the same time 3. Increasing density is not advantageous for sweet potato (but has advantages for weed control). → Recommended density = 10,000 vines/ha in intercrop. 4. Effects of density and relative planting time are not site-specific. → Recommendations will mainly be driven by cropping objectives and sweet potato tuber prices Cassava 1. Intercropping reduces cassava yield by 5 – 60% → Yield penalty is site-specific 2. LER remains positive 3. Intercropping can be recommended when the farmer wants to maximize land use efficiency. → sweet potato is the more important crop
  32. 32. Validation exercises – pilot study www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org • Currently 243 farmers across Tanzania and Nigeria involved in pilot validation exercise… • Supervised by trained extension agents, and coordinated by primary development partners (SG2000 and Psaltry/2Scale in Nigeria, and FCI in Tanzania to start in 2019) • NARS teams of agronomists assist in training and monitoring. • DSTs and all data collection through a suite of ODK forms
  33. 33. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org 153 submissions on “Best Intercropping Practices” recommendations 143 validation exercises established, spread across 5 states (Oyo, Ogun, Benue, Cross River, Anambra)
  34. 34. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Current maize performance: 16%: < knee-height → Don’t apply fertilizer, apply manure and improve soil fertility 43%: knee to chest height → Apply fertilizer, if price ratio cobs/fertilizer is favourable 41%: > chest height → Apply fertilizer, if price ratio is favourable but lower response Does this hold? Too conservative? Overview input parameters • Price of cassava most variable • Price of maize: 5-25 USD/100 cobs • Cost of urea: 20-30 USD/50 kg bag • Cost of NPK: 15-25 USD/50 kg bag Some outliers / unrealistic costs or prices! Cost of input & price of produce:
  35. 35. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org So what is being recommended? 47%: medium maize and favourable price ratio Recommend applying fertilizer 26%: medium maize but risky price ratio Do not apply fertilizer 11%: medium maize but unfavourable price ratio Do not apply fertilizer 16%: low or tall maize Do not apply fertilizer
  36. 36. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: maize yield effects • Increased density only does not increase nr of large or medium cobs, it only results in more small cobs and more cobs that are unfit for sale. • About 25% of farmers have decreased numbers of large and medium cobs from increasing density only. • Fertilizer application to a high density maize crop increases cob numbers for all classes, and especially more large and medium cobs. This increase is significant for 75% of farmers, varying between 2,500 – 10,000 more large cobs per hectare. • No negative effects of fertilizer application observed on cob numbers.
  37. 37. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: net revenue • Increased density only did not entail an overall increas in net revenue. • For about 25% of farmers, increased density resulted in small decreases in net revenue. • Fertilizer application to a high density maize crop increases net revenue by on average 350 $/ha (~ project target). • About 2/3 of participants realize a significant net revenue increase. Only a minority (~5%) observed a small negative impact on net revenue. Was this as predicted by the DST?
  38. 38. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations Low density High density High density + fertilizer High density 10% 14% 36% High density + fertilizer 4% 5% 31% Best performing Recommended
  39. 39. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations Low density High density High density + fertilizer High density 10% 14% 36% High density + fertilizer 4% 5% 31% Best performing Recommended Correct recommendation!
  40. 40. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations Low density High density High density + fertilizer High density 10% 14% 36% High density + fertilizer 4% 5% 31% Best performing Recommended Correct recommendation! Incorrect recommendation but no loss in revenue and no added cost
  41. 41. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations Low density High density High density + fertilizer High density 10% 14% 36% High density + fertilizer 4% 5% 31% Best performing Recommended Correct recommendation! Incorrect recommendation but no loss in revenue and no added cost Incorrect recommendation with loss in revenue and limited added cost
  42. 42. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations Low density High density High density + fertilizer High density 10% 14% 36% High density + fertilizer 4% 5% 31% Best performing Recommended Correct recommendation! Incorrect recommendation but no loss in revenue and no added cost Incorrect recommendation with loss in revenue and limited added cost Incorrect recommendation with loss in revenue and substantial added cost
  43. 43. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations 4% 5% 31% 10% 14% 36% Limited loss in net revenue: DST performs acceptably. Lost opportunity in revenue: DST is too conservative.
  44. 44. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations What if we change the decision rules? 1. Allow fertilizer application to tall maize 2. Set minimal VCR to 1.2 instead of 2 $/$
  45. 45. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Results: Evaluation of recommendations 8% 15% 52% 7% 4% 16% Proportion of correct recommendations increases from 44% to 56% Proportion of incorrect recommendations with high cost increases from 9% to 23%, but loss in revenue is limited.
  46. 46. Validation exercises – overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org How do we best handle risk? 1. Conservatively by minimal VCR of 2 $/$ • Some farmers loose opportunities; • others are better protected against real loss of money 2. Risk friendly by minimal VCR of 1.2 instead of 2 $/$ • More farmers can realize their opportunities • More farmers are at risk of loosing real money 3. Let the farmer choose the minimal VCR • Farmer can make the choice about the risk (s)he is taking • How well can farmers assess whether they can take a higher risk?
  47. 47. Overview www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Best Intercropping Practices DST: 1. Introduction (Veronica Uzokwe): • The IC use case • Learnings from the baseline • Summary of year 2 achievements 2. Field activities (Mark Tokula and Haji Saleh): • Field activities: Intercropping trials • Field trial results 3. Advances with the DST development (Christine Kreye): • Modelling framework • Year1 – Year2 validation results • The Decision Support Tool 4. Validation exercises (Chris Okoli and Wiston Mwombeki): • First impressions from ongoing validation exercises • Next steps and additional data needs
  48. 48. Key Activities www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Key activities held in preparation of validation exercises Discussion with partners around on-farm trial • Selection and training of farmers to participate in the trials management • Over 100 farmers from 10 clusters were engaged: 7 clusters in Unguja and 3 in Pemba • Major work for period was on trials management and data collection • Validation exercise to start in year 2019. Evaluation of sweet potato and cassava crop performance
  49. 49. Testimonies from farmers www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Mr Jeshi, from Bumbwini, FCI Intercropping sweet potato and cassava is done out of tradition. However these scientific studies are helping us to get meaning to what we have been doing: • Time of introducing sweet potato- we expect to see the difference between plating time • Spacing between plants and lines • Application of fertilizers I am eager to learn more and apply lessons immediately. “Group training and experience sharing enhance quick learning.”
  50. 50. Testimonies from farmers www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Akama, from Donge Vibweni, FCI (not on photo) • Akama is a lady participating in ACAI project • She testifies that the knowledge from proper intercropping is helping her: • Better land utilization • To manage yield of both crops • Increased household income from sale of both crops • Sweet potatoes are increasingly becoming commercial crop hence requires proper handling “Farmers are looking forward to development of tools to support their farming activities for the two crops which are vital for food and income.”
  51. 51. Testimonies from farmers www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Deve Suleiman- From Machui, FCI (in blue shirt) • Deve participates in ACAI project as a trained Extension Agent. • He is an influential farmer in his area (Machui). • He says that while intercropping is not new, the current knowledge is new and beneficial. • Previously they were doing randomly hence affecting yield of the main crop as well as the intercrop. “The entire process is helping farmers to appreciate new knowledge, for example on the use of fertilizer.”
  52. 52. Validation exercises NG – impressions from the field www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org
  53. 53. Key Activities www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Key activities held in preparation of validation exercises Indoor training-of-trainers Field demarcation exercise Role play of IC-DST validation exercise
  54. 54. Key Activities www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Objective: To observe and emulate the optimum cassava and maize intercropping practices (IC) Decision Support Tool (DST) under validation. Farmer field days held by SG2000 SC reacting to farmers questions at Anambra Farmer field day at Agir Gwer, Benue state Date and Location: • Anambra state – 17th, 27th & 28th Aug 2018 at Umunze, Ukwwulu & Omogho • Benue state – 19th, Oct,2018 at Apir
  55. 55. Testimonies from farmers www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Kehinde Akingbade – SG2000 OG I have learnt: • about planting of one maize seed per hole. • about spacing of 0.8m x 1m. • new method of fertilizer application – application of fertilizer between maize and cassava. • not to burn vegetation debris during land preparation. I was surprised that the maize was due for harvest in just two months. This will give farmers opportunity to plant maize up to three times in one raining season.
  56. 56. Testimonies from Extension Agents www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org • I have learnt application of fertilizer at planting. I formerly knew of fertilizer application at 4WAP. • I have learnt about planting of one maize seed per hole. • I now know ho to use ampligo for control of army worm. Adedayo Popoola – SG2000 OG
  57. 57. Testimonies from Extension Agents www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org • I have learnt about maize spacing of 25cm x 25cm as against the traditional 1m x 1m and 50cm x 50cm. • I have learnt about cassava spacing of 0.8m by 1m against 1m by 1m. • I now understand importance of effective monitoring of cassava field. • I have learnt how to use ODK for data collection. Margaret Asuo – SG2000 CR
  58. 58. www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org Chris E.Okoli – SG2000 AN • Rewarding the EA for every activity performed encourages hard work. • I have learnt to plan an exercise, train, supply materials and inputs as at when due and supervise. This leads to quality data generation and high yields. • I have learnt how correct NPK fertilizer to a maize intercrop can substantially increase cobs. The validation exercises have exposed SG2000 to the use of smartphones in extension delivery. The EAs can now advice the farmers right there in the field with the use of smartphones to access the DSTs. The EAs can now easily collect data in the field with the use of ODK. Suggestion: DSTs should be available in English and in local languages. Testimonies from Extension Agents
  59. 59. Validation exercises – Next steps www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org • Do EAs and farmers understand the principles of the DST? • Do they make sense to them? • Do they agree with the emphasis on maize (maize to pay for the fertilizer) • Are there concerns about high maize density when fertilizer is applied? • What do they consider the reduction in cassava yield? • What is the risk of army worm infestation and impact of pest control cost? • Will the use of the DST influence their decision making at farm level? • Land allocation for intercropping • Change in market / trader who would buy higher amounts Use the field day to interact with EAs and farmers ! Get more answers…
  60. 60. Thank you very much !!! Questions and discussion www.iita.org | www.cgiar.org | www.acai-project.org

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