Value chains Value chains Respective post owners and feed distributors Tue, 27 Nov 2018 14:34:38 +0000 Feed Informer WorldFish’s Shakuntala Thilsted joins experts to lead UN Food System Summit FISH CRP urn:uuid:ae244eeb-86d5-64bd-e8f7-d7a1d58cf6a5 Fri, 18 Sep 2020 06:32:41 +0000 <p>WorldFish’s Program Leader for Value Chains and Nutrition Shakuntala Thilsted was appointed a top role at the UN Food Systems Summit 2021.  </p> <p>Thilsted was named a Vice-chair of the summit's Advancing Equitable Livelihoods Action Track by the Special Envoy for the 2021 Food Systems Summit Agnes Kalibata. The role will see Thilsted responsible for guiding the global event's direction related to building sustainable, inclusive and nutritious food systems and value chains that support both people and planet. </p> <p><figure><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/images/49226164441_bc4b0de61e_k.jpg" /><br /> <figcaption>WorldFish’s Program Leader for Value Chains and Nutrition Shakuntala Thilsted was selected as Vice-chair of the Advancing Equitable Livelihoods Action Track at the UN Food Systems Summit 2021. Photo by Neil Palmer/ WorldFish. </figcaption><br /> </figure></p> <p>“The international summit is our chance to mobilize a global movement to positively transform our food production, distribution, consumption and waste. Equitable livelihoods depend on fair, fruitful and nutritious food systems that hold sustainability and resilience at their heart.” </p> <p>“Our goal, therefore, is to take a holistic approach to food system transformation. Solutions must move beyond land-based crops and livestock to food below water. The potential of diverse and nutritious aquatic foods is ripe for the picking, offering a path to produce sufficient food supply without increasing carbon emissions while reducing ecosystem stress and habitat loss,” she said. </p> <p>The impacts of Thilsted’s decades-long work on nutrition and value chains are as diverse as they are far-reaching. Her research and landmark innovations on nutrition-sensitive approaches put human-nutrition as a principle objective when managing food systems. Thilsted’s influential work has led to increased supply and access to diverse aquatic-based foods, healthier diets and inclusive value chains empowering and benefiting millions of vulnerable people, particularly women and children in the first 1000 days of life, in countries across Asia and Africa.</p> <p>Thilsted was <a href="">announced among other experts</a> across the fields of food, agriculture, health and climate change who have committed...</p> A food system integration story: Fish with roots, tubers and bananas RTB-CGIAR urn:uuid:6cfd0501-249c-976b-29c5-cd0ed655481d Tue, 18 Aug 2020 07:50:21 +0000 What do catfish and bananas have in common? No, this is not a riddle or the start of a bad joke. Some farmers know the answer: Bananas and catfish are a win-win when grown together in the same farming system. In fact, banana residues are a nutritious feed to enhance the growth of the catfish. [&#8230;] <p>What do catfish and bananas have in common? No, this is not a riddle or the start of a bad joke. Some farmers know the answer: Bananas and catfish are a win-win when grown together in the same farming system. In fact, banana residues are a nutritious feed to enhance the growth of the catfish.</p> <p><a href="">New research</a> shows that in combination they provide a complementary integrated agriculture-aquaculture (IAA) system which can add diversity to diets, provide increased economic opportunity while being good for the environment. The findings have also been published as journal article.</p> <p>The benefits of integrating rice, livestock or poultry with fish are well documented but there is little research on the advantages of combining fish with roots, tubers and bananas, said Lauren Pincus, a value chains scientist with WorldFish who worked on the study.</p> <p>“We are looking into the food value chains for combinations that reduce the climate impacts of farming. Aquaculture integrated with roots, tubers and banana production is definitely a topic that needs further exploration,” she said.</p> <p>IAA systems are environmentally beneficial due to their emphasis on recycling nutrients from crop residues and water through the system. They are positioned as particularly appropriate for small-scale, resource-poor farmers and suitable for areas with limited availability of agricultural land.</p> <p>Researchers from the CGIAR <a href="">Research Programs on Fish Agri-Food Systems (FISH)</a> and on Roots, Tubers and Bananas (RTB) teamed up to investigate what is currently known about IAA systems that comprise both fish and other aquatic animals, and RTB crops. Despite the potential benefits, the review of the literature found just nine scientific studies assessing the benefits of integrated fish and RTB crops systems but provided a great start in exploring a food-based approach to farming.</p> <p>“We are trying to address our food system challenges by looking into the animal or crop production value chains and minimising food waste and loss,” added Diego Naziri, co-author and value chain and post-harvest specialist with the International Potato Center (CIP). “Our aim in this study was to document links among fish and roots, tubers and banana crops within agri-food systems and identify opportunities for strengthened integration in production systems, animal feed and nutrient-rich food products.”</p> <p>Roots, tubers and bananas provide an estimated average of 20 percent of the daily per capita calorie intake for the 640 million inhabitants of sub-Saharan Africa and are an important staple in in lower-income countries. With the growing population there is increasing demand for these crops both for food and for feed. Similarly, 3.2 billion people worldwide rely on fish for almost 20 percent of their animal source food intake. Their combination in IAA farming benefits smallholder farmers who can consume and have access to both vegetable and animal source foods.</p> <p>“When households have the opportunity to consume fish and root, tuber and banana crops together in the same meal, they can also realize the additional nutritional benefit that comes from consuming an animal-source food that improves the nutrient bioavailability of the staple food on their plate,”  said Kendra Byrd, WorldFish nutrition scientist.</p> <p>The research underscores a move to a multi-goal, nutrition-sensitive approach, which utilizes agricultural systems to advance food security, malnutrition and poverty objectives. Nutrition-sensitive interventions are referred to as “food-based” approaches that aim to address the underlying determinants of micronutrient deficiencies—meaning access to and adequate consumption of a variety of nutritious and safe to consume foods.</p> <p>“Globally, banana was the RTB crop most commonly integrated with fish production. Farmers reported taking advantage of the pond water to produce RTB crops and using the pond silt as fertilizer for the crops,” said Molly Atkins, leading author of the review.</p> <p>“The peels and leaves of the crops could also be used as feed for the fish, particularly by smallholder farmers who find commercially-produced fish feed prohibitively expensive,” she explained.</p> <p>“Further research that looks into how developing country agricultural systems can use ‘circular economy’ concepts, such as diverting cassava peel to fish feed mills, to increase nutrient cycling and reduce waste throughout the systems would be beneficial,” she added.</p> <p>Harnessing nutrients from what might be considered agricultural ’waste’ is expected to reduce the need for commercial fertilizers, which are commonly applied to ponds to serve the same phytoplankton-producing function.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <figure><img src="" alt="" /><figcaption>Jayanti Rai, a woman fish farmer taking care her vegetables garden beside the pond dike at Goaldhanga, Narail, Bangladesh. Photo by Noor Alam.</figcaption></figure> <p>The study found much detail on how farmers harnessed the nutrient- and water-cycling benefits of IAA systems, in subsequent interviews with stakeholders in Bangladesh. However, farmers in Bangladesh reported that they saw IAA practices declining over time, and some attributed this to extension officers discouraging farmers from using ‘traditional’ IAA practices.</p> <p>The review also found thirty studies investigating root, tuber and banana crop residues to determine their feasibility as an ingredient in commercially-produced fish feed. Many of these studies were conducted in Nigeria, where cassava is widely consumed and there is a growing aquaculture sector. Fish feed is often cited as the biggest production cost for fish farmers and lowering the cost of fish feed through the use of locally-available agricultural waste products, such as cassava peel could boost aquaculture, especially in the small-scale sector. Using cassava peel as fish feed could potentially mitigate a growing environmental problem of agricultural waste in Nigeria. The review noted that supply issues would need to be addressed before cassava peel and other RTB crops by-products could be used at a large scale by fish feed mills.</p> <p>Continue reading on the CGIAR Research Program on Fish Agri-Food Systems <a href="">website</a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Inclusive innovation in agricultural value chains RTB-CGIAR urn:uuid:e3e48bda-823d-f984-90ed-babed40ef0cc Sun, 09 Aug 2020 19:03:53 +0000 A participatory approach to market innovation and development pioneered in the Andean region in early 2000 is helping to connect smallholder producers to other value chain actors and develop business opportunities for indigenous products based on local biodiversity. Doug Horton the lead author noted “PMCA was developed to stimulate inclusive innovation in agricultural value chains [&#8230;] <p>A participatory approach to market innovation and development pioneered in the Andean region in early 2000 is helping to connect smallholder producers to other value chain actors and develop business opportunities for indigenous products based on local biodiversity.</p> <p>Doug Horton the lead author noted “PMCA was developed to stimulate inclusive innovation in agricultural value chains and reduce poverty among potato producers in the Andes. By systematically tracking use for over nearly two decades, we were pleasantly surprised to learn the Participatory Market Chain Approach (PMCA) has since been applied and adapted to value chains for more than 20 agricultural commodities in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America!”.</p> <p>Efforts to develop this novel use of collective action for value chains began as part of the International Potato Center (<a href="">CIP</a>)-led Papa Andina regional program. The PMCA forged links between smallholder farmers and other value chain actors, to tap high-value niche markets for both fresh and processed products based on largely under-valued and under-exploited native Andean potato varieties.</p> <p>Targeting urban and subsequently export markets, the approach gained traction in Peru and the number of its beneficiaries increased exponentially to more than 100,000 smallholder farmers and different types of market agents, with dozens of gourmet native potato-based products developed in the process. These have included coloured native potato chips, an Andean instant mashed potato and T’ikapapa gourmet potatoes, which went on to win both the <a href="">World Challenge Award</a> and the <a href="">Promoting Entrepreneurship for Sustainable Development (SEED) Initiative</a>.</p> <p>Led by CIP and developed and implemented with a range of non-CGIAR organizations, the PMCA involves a facilitated approach to support value chain actors in developing market-driven innovations. André Devaux, co-author, explains “A critical component is the active involvement of a wide range of value chain actors, including the small-scale producers themselves, entrepreneurs and relevant service providers to build trust, to promote mutual learning to stimulate innovation across the value chain. We do that through a series of group meetings and public events that engage a progressively broader group of stakeholders in co-innovation. This process encourages them to be part of a single dynamic where the sum amongst all the value chain players is greater than its parts”.</p> <p>Effective facilitation makes a valuable contribution to identifying business openings and supplying technical support where needed to improve production and marketing. This may include introducing pest and disease measures, pinpointing suitable varieties and systems for improved seed quality, and providing assistance in developing packaging, labelling and branding further down the value chain.</p> <p>A <a href="">working paper</a> published by CIP on experiences in developing and implementing the approach examines cases where the PMCA has been applied in value chains for aquaculture, coffee, organic and typical regional products, potatoes and vegetables in Albania, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Indonesia, Nepal, Peru and Uganda. In this African country, a combination of South-South knowledge-sharing with Bolivian and Peruvian counterparts, study visits and mentoring paved the way for the approach to be applied to products in the potato, sweetpotato and tomato value chains. Innovation processes have later led to the development of entirely new products, such as sliced and dried hot peppers – which are now being exported – and the PMCA has been used to develop commercial opportunities for indigenous African leafy vegetables and other crops in Uganda in neighbouring countries.</p> <p>“Applying the PMCA on value chains with many vulnerable actors such as women and youth has highlighted their participation in and benefit from agricultural marketing.  The opportunity to engage with other value chain actors in joint business planning has enabled women to officially register and expand their vegetable seed enterprises in Central Uganda” shares Sarah Mayanja, a co-author.</p> <p>With adjustments to fit local contexts, the PMCA has been used to strengthen the potato value chain in West Java, Indonesia, domestic coffee marketing in San Martin Department, Peru, and to upgrade and develop typical regional products such as herbs, spices, nuts, mushrooms and olive oil in Albania. In Bangladesh and Nepal, a PMCA initiative with <a href="">WorldFish</a> has targeted fish farmers, hatchery and nursery owners, and traders and suppliers of feed, fertilizer and aqua-medicines, 40 percent of them women. Documented results include improvements in the production practices of smallholders – both women and men – increased participation in input and fish markets, and greater quantities of fish produced, marketed and consumed in the two countries.</p> <p>Based on an analysis of how the PMCA has been applied in different settings, the report outlines six key lessons aimed at improving future efforts to promote inclusive innovation in agricultural value chains. Key drivers of innovation that have been identified include:</p> <ul> <li>favorable policy environments and strong leadership during the PMCA process</li> <li>following the approach’s basic principles</li> <li>effective facilitation</li> <li>flexibility to adjust plans and procedures along the way, in response to emerging opportunities and results.</li> </ul> <p>The PMCA was most effective when implemented as an integral part of a broader intervention that included technological and institutional support as well as business promotion and public awareness. Follow-up after completion of the PMCA exercises was also important to promote outcomes and impact.</p> <p>Experience has shown that mainstreaming the PMCA requires significant resources and a focused strategy.  Graham Thiele, RTB director and co-author, commented: “the outcomes could have been greater still, if we had thought through an efficient scaling strategy to promote the broader use of PMCA which represents a highly effective solution to the perennial challenge of embedding participatory systems approaches in agricultural research and development organizations”.</p> Next phase of Maziwa Zaidi project in Tanzania to promote agri-entrepreneurship, technology uptake and inclusive dairy development CGIAR Research Program on Livestock urn:uuid:190ae047-af3c-e7c6-aab1-4df5e9bdf927 Mon, 04 Nov 2019 17:59:38 +0000 In June, partners working on the Maziwa Zaidi dairy project in Tanzania agreed key aims and directions for the coming phase of the dairy value chain upgrading project (until the end of 2021). Coordinated by Amos Omore of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRi), the project contributes to an inclusive and sustainable development of the Tanzania dairy value chain. <span class="more-link"><a href="">Continue reading <span class="meta-nav">&#8594;</span></a></span> <p><div data-shortcode="caption" id="attachment_1418" style="width: 3082px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href=""><img aria-describedby="caption-attachment-1418" data-attachment-id="1418" data-permalink="" data-orig-file="" data-orig-size="3072,2304" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;7.1&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;DSC-W120&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;1241603244&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;5.35&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;125&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0.00625&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;1&quot;}" data-image-title="Moving milk by motorbike in Tanzania" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" class="wp-image-1418 size-full" src="" alt="" width="3072" height="2304" srcset=" 3072w,;h=113 150w,;h=225 300w,;h=576 768w,;h=768 1024w" sizes="(max-width: 3072px) 100vw, 3072px" /></a><p id="caption-attachment-1418" class="wp-caption-text">Moving milk by motorbike in Tanzania: Adapting dairy market hubs for pro-poor smallholder value chains in Tanzania project (photo credit: ILRI/Ben Lukuyu).</p></div></p> <p>Earlier this year, the CGIAR’s Livestock research program provided additional resources to take forward work in four priority countries – Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda and Vietnam. The aim is to accelerate work on the most promising technologies and innovations identified in previous years, advancing their uptake and use in development.</p> <p>In June, partners working on the <em>Maziwa Zaidi</em> dairy project in Tanzania agreed key aims and directions for the coming phase of the dairy value chain upgrading project (until the end of 2021).</p> <p>Coordinated by Amos Omore of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRi), the project contributes to an inclusive and sustainable development of the Tanzania dairy value chain. Its three goals are: for smallholder women and men farmers to have reliable and consistent access to quality inputs and services that enable them to efficiently achieve high dairy productivity; for smallholder men and women farmers to have access to inclusive, reliable, well-coordinated, and efficient dairy products marketing arrangement that will improve household income and livelihoods; and, for poor consumers to have access to quality, safe, and nutritious dairy products at affordable prices.</p> <p>The business case for research to upgrade Tanzania’s smallholder dairy value chain highlights large milk productivity gaps and ongoing strong demand for milk. The previous phases of <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Maziwa Zaidi</em></a> (2012-2017) experimented with multi-stakeholder processes involving pre-commercial dairy market hubs (DMHs) and innovation platforms (IPs) as mechanisms to upgrade the smallholder dairy value chain towards more commercial dairying.  We engaged farmer groups as entry points before linking them to other value chain actors for service provision. However, this process was found to be slow and required substantial investment in capacity building for collective action by milk producers. On the other hand, building DMHs around enterprising value chain actors was a more promising entry point to create and grow linkages among value chain actors to improve access to markets, inputs, and services for producers.</p> <p><strong>Focus on agribusinesses</strong></p> <p>This phase will work with agribusinesses in the dairy value chain (including feed and fodder value chains) to promote proven dairy technologies and innovations. It will support agribusiness skills development and embed these proven dairy technologies in the portfolio of products and services that agribusinesses and agri-entrepreneurs deliver, enhancing uptake of dairy technologies and innovations. Women- and youth-led dairy agribusinesses will be targeted with business development services (BDS) and other support services to overcome barriers to entry into lucrative nodes of the dairy value chain.</p> <p>The project will work with partners to capacitate agribusinesses, adopting a <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">market systems</a> approach that aims to scale out their business operations. This approach, also referred to as ‘markets for the poor’ (M4P), will help address critical <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">weaknesses in dairy market development</a> by going beyond the traditional value chain model to address the wider context in which value chains operate by emphasizing inclusive and equitable value chain upgrading options for economic growth.</p> <p><strong>Bundles of interventions</strong></p> <p>The project will promote intervention packages that bundle and combine proven genetics, health and feeds technologies within institutional arrangements that allow farmers to utilize and benefit from these bundles. Building on outputs generated from a <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">2017 policy forum</a> and others, the project will test proven technologies and innovations that have the potential to be profitably leveraged by agribusinesses and partners (depending on their demand and interest). A ‘basket’ containing these technologies and innovations will be offered as options to agri-entrepreneurs, who will be encouraged to pick combination(s) of their choice. These combinations are the packages to be piloted.</p> <p>To better identify the potential packages, the project very recently held a joint <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">agribusiness forum</a> with development partners to prioritize the existing best-bet technical and institutional innovations and supporting activities and turn them into integrated ‘packages’. Involving agripreneurs, researchers, innovators, service providers and delivery organizations, a short list of technical products for the delivery packages to be profitably leveraged by agribusiness targeting producers were identified as: Brachiaria grass (or other forage options), manure management, East coast fever vaccine, and artificial insemination. These will be delivered through capacitated agripreneurs and agribusinesses, using digital platforms for farmer profiling and e-extension, and capacity development supporting market access, safer products and effective collective action.</p> <p>To deliver these, the various change agents and partners in the project will provide a custom set of associated enabling packages to the agripreneurs and agribusinesses. These will enable them to provide the services the producers need – combining technical knowhow, clean, green and gendered expertise, as well as business and soft skills necessary to be profitable.</p> <p>Underpinning the packaging and delivery of these technologies and innovations by the agripreneurs and agribusinesses will be delivery/markets/platforms involving ‘agent network’ the ‘dairy farmer assistant’ models. The related approach of dairy market hubs will also be part of the delivery platforms.</p> <p>It is important to emphasize that specific combinations of these ‘priority’ innovations (and others) will be customized following further engagement with the agripreneurs.</p> <p>One of our assumptions is that scaling promising technologies and innovations has been inhibited by the lack of bankable business cases for more public and/or private investments. Thus, we may also evaluate the scale-readiness of some technologies in parallel to the piloting, particularly in relation to institutional and policy barriers.</p> <p>The project will work in four districts in Kilimanjaro and Tanga regions, joining forces with various government, private sector, development and research partners and seeking synergies with their projects.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">See a presentation on the proposed project</a></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Read the report of the October 2019 agribusiness forum on identifying profitable dairy innovation packages for Tanzania agri-entrepreneurs</a></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Visit the Maziwa Zaidi web site</a></p> <p><a href="">More information on the Program’s work in Tanzania</a></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Outputs of our work in Tanzania</a></p>