Africa RISING going to scale in the Eastern Province of Zambia Project

Review and End-of-Project Meeting

7 – 8 September 2017

Lusaka, Zambia

Event 2017: AR going to scale in E. Province of Zambia Review and End-of-Project Meeting

  1. Share updates on project activities implemented and achievements since inception
  2. Capture/document lessons learned from project implementation
  3. Develop an exit strategy for project activities and partners

Click here to download final list.

Day 1 (7 Sept.)
8:30 Participant’s registration
9:00 Introduction of participants/ overview of agenda for the day – Jonathan Odhong’
9:30 Welcome & Opening remarks
    • David Chikoye - IITA Southern Africa Hub Director
    • Moses Mwale – Zambia Agricultural Research Institute
    • Harry Ngoma – USAID Zambia Mission
    • Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon – Project Manager Africa RISING East and Southern Africa

10:00 Tea/Coffe Break and group photo
10:30 Overview of project activities implemented and expected outcomes – Mateete Bekunda
11:00 Presentations by Theme Leaders on implementation progress and achievements toward expected outcomes – also highlight remaining gaps (30 minutes presentation by each theme + 15 mins Q&A after each presentation)
12:30 Lunch Break
2:00 Continuation of Theme presentations
3:30 Tea/Coffe Break
16:00 Group exercise: To assess how much has been achieved in terms of cross fertilization between themes and Malawi/Zambia
17:00 End of day

Day 2 (8 Sept.)
9:00 Overview of agenda for the day/Recap
9:15 Africa RISING going to scale in E. Province of Zambia - legacy, loose ends and exit strategy - group activity
10:15 Tea/Coffe Break
11:45 Next steps
12:00 Closing remarks
  • Harry Ngoma – USAID Zambia Mission
  • Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon – Project Manager Africa RISING East and Southern Africa
12:30 Lunch Break & Departure


DAY ONE - 7 September

Welcome & opening remarks

  • David Chikoye - IITA Southern Africa Hub Director
    • Good morning once again for those who are coming to Zambia for the first time. I hope that after the meeting, you will like to see more of this place.
    • It is my pleasure to see everyone here.
    • Let me first of all thank the donor (USAID) for having supported the project all through the years. It gives us a kind of confidence knowing they believe in us. You know donors are very impact oriented, one day they give you funds and the next four days they are expecting to see the impact. On behalf of the group here, please extend our appreciation to USAID for having supported all through the years.
    • Today we are going to be reviewing not only what we have done over the past year but also in the past two years.
    • We already have success and failure stories which we can learn from. Let me say something about the failure aspect; let us not hide the failures but bring them out so that we can reflect on it and how we could have done it better.
    • Most of these problems never end, as you solve one, another comes up. Let us document our success or failure so that we can learn from it.
    • For the success stories again, let’s also bring them out and let’s look at how how we can now go to scale. It doesn’t matter if the USAID funding is coming to an end. I am sure there are other doors which can be open.
    • At this stage of scaling out, where we are at. There are so many other people who can actually benefit from the technology and everything we have. Let it be a relay match, someone starts and someone else picks up the baton and then runs with it.
    • Let’s also look at our exit strategy, identify those things we can use to do a proper scaling out etc.
    • With those few comments, I wish you a successful deliberation and that you enjoy the rest of your stay in Chisamba.

  • Read by Mrs. Monde Zulu (on behalf of Mr. Moses Mwale) Zambia Agricultural Research Institute
    • I am standing in for the director of ZARI who had another commitment.
    • The regional director for the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, the coordinator of Africa RISING project, fellow researchers and agriculturist, distinguished invited guests, ladies and gentlemen. I am honored to speak at this year’s annual review and end-of-project meeting for the Africa RISING going to scale in the Eastern province of Zambia project.
    • You will note the resolve of ZARI to partner with other institutes. In particular, you will notice that ZARI partners with USAID, CGIAR centers, and other partners in an effort to generate superior technologies. Various agricultural innovations that we have here before us are as a result of that.
    • Chair person, as we reflect on the Africa RISING project, I wish to applaud the efforts all of you have made in contributing towards the various technologies supported by the project in the Eastern Province.
    • As a research institute we feel privileged to have partnered with a team whom we can share the challenge of developing relevant agricultural technologies for our agricultural dependent communities.
    • Ladies and gentlemen the activities that form the Africa RISING of Zambia are not foreign to general situations in ZARI or the general agricultural community of Zambia. Legumes are an important aspect of the agricultural agenda in Zambia. In particular the Eastern Province where the project has operated is an important producer of legumes such as groundnuts and soya beans. I must state too that there has been increased interest among stakeholders; to revitalize the role that legumes like pigeon pea play in nutrition and also in improving the productivity of cereal legume system.
    • I am delighted to note that the Africa RISING has managed to generate a sizeable amount of early generation seed for improved groundnut varieties that could be used to improve farmers access to these improved varieties.
    • Ladies and gentlemen, ZARI is therefore pleased to have partnered with this project in proposing options for increasing healthy lives through the consumption of Orange Fleshed Sweet Potato. Efforts by the project to generate disease free seed banks and to multiply these into the local communities for the benefits of farmers are well noted.
    • We are also pleased that the project has made it important to revalidate the applicability of Aflasafe in mitigating aflatoxin contamination in groundnut and maize in Zambia. This is in spite of the challenges faced such as low progress in the application of Aflasafe.
    • I therefore wish to particularly thank the American people through USAID for providing the resources used in undertaking this project.
    • I wish you well as you deliberate on the activities of the past years. For colleagues visiting from outside Zambia, I extend a warm Zambian welcome once again and hope that you all have a fruitful stay.
    • Thank you and may God bless you all.

  • Harry Ngoma – USAID Zambia Mission
    • Thank you very much for the welcome.
    • Thanks for ensuring that farmers benefit from science and technology. Some of you remember when we started this activity six years ago under the Feed the Future project. Over that period of time, we have spent close to twenty million dollars in terms of support to the research sector where we are trying to develop the productivity enhancing technologies.
    • We think that this investment has been very well spent, and a lot has been done.
    • We are also very thankful for the effort spent in making this work by all the partners. For USAID, we have a limited basket of resources and we think that what we have demonstrated in the past years has been great while working closely with the government and we hope that the government of Zambia can complete this gap from where we stopped in the research arena.
    • We are very happy that this has generated over 15 technologies over the last six years, new crops that are nutrition based which are really having impact when they get to the community.
    • I know how long these changes take to show, I remember then when we started the OFSP as a project in 1997 at that time was just limited to a part of Zambia, and now it has scaled so much to become a produce associated with Zambia.
    • So I am very hopeful that we have reached the desired level of impact but at the end of the day, this investment would show...some of them may take five, ten years from now etc. We are grateful that we have reached the maximum! We may not have all the resources like we did in the past years but we intend to keep supporting some of the critical gaps as we move forward.
    • I hope that we will be meeting again.
    • Thank you so much.

  • Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon – Manager Africa RISING East and Southern Africa and West Africa Projects
    • Last night, at the dining table, Christian was saying that it was so nice to have a workshop where you know everybody and I agree with him.
    • I was a bit confused when Harry (Ngoma) and David (Chikoye) talked about the project starting six, seven years ago. I felt oh, where I have been? But now I understand where you are coming from. You are referring to the Feed the Future Project too that was a precursor of some of the activities under our current project which has been in place for two years.
    • The past two years have been focusing on four areas of activities:
      • Improving legume seed delivery systems
      • Strengthening OFSP planting material systems
      • Sustainable intensification of low-input maize-legume systems
      • Commercializing Aflasafe as biocontrol agent for aflatoxin mitigation
    • These were the areas which back in 2015 when the Feed the Future project came to an end, USAID felt they were still some activities that needed to be completed in order for the farmers to have the full benefit of the project.
    • Africa RISING in eastern province of Zambia was an undertaking to re-validate technology and also to fill a few research gaps.
    • Last time when we met, I said this originated from four research projects in the past and that we should try to strive for cross-fertilization and learning from the Africa RISING Malawi team because we do a lot of similar things.
    • Personally, I think we have been working successfully together; there have been hiccups which is normal when starting out a new partnership.
    • It was a in February this year when Mateete and I came here for a field visit, it was impressive not just because of the many technologies we saw demonstrated here but also to see the engagement and interest of the farmers.
    • I was also pleased with the feedback Harry shared with me on his last visit to the field in August. He said (in his words) that we have been successful.
    • These two years, Africa RIING going to scale is over at least fortunately for the farmers because they have something at hand maybe unfortunately for us because we do not continue in the way we have been in the past year.
    • We are here together to take stock of what we have achieved or not achieved., I think that the results of this project, the partnerships, friendships we have made in this project will help us if we decide to work on a new project.
    • We can’t just end this project like that without submitting the final reports.
    • In Africa RISING, we follow ethical standards hopefully at least we have them in writing. We really have to communicate to our farmers that this is the end now and why it is the end. We must also that the farmers have the products of this project so that they receive fully the benefits of their time. This is important for our reputation, because there so many projects. People come to these farmers with offers which they do not fully satisfy. So, let us be professional and ethical. I leave the thanks for the closing remarks. Okay, I look forward to the success of this meeting, hearing about the many success stories and achievements. Thank you very much for coming.

Presentations by Theme Leaders on implementation progress and achievements toward expected outcomes

  • Theme 1: Improving legume seed delivery systems – David Chisanga, IITA

    • Q: I am not familiar with the names of varieties here in Zambia, but is that the same as the Namuseba variety which you mentioned for cowpea? When you talked about certified seed, you mentioned another variety, but here in the work plan for the team I have Namusanga. Please clarify.
    • A: There was a misspell on the work plan, the variety called Namusanga is actually supposed to be Namuseba.

    • Q: The amount of seed produced for groundnut – we had planned to have 10 T production of breeder seed for 8 varieties. Then you decided to focus only on the new varieties and drop the old ones, this then came down to a total of only 3 T of breeder seeds. So we are missing 7 T of breeder seed. Maybe your decision to drop the old varieties was good, but I think there is now a lack of breeder seed. I also don’t seem to recall that this change of plans was communicated to the project management.
    • A: What happened was that we wanted to work with the original target, but after some back and forth discussion with USAID which really wanted us to bring in the new varieties we made a change. The USAID argument was that you have these varieties which are over 10 years already with the farmers, why continue to focus on them at the expense of the more newer varieties? So what we did was to shift those old varieties and use them as training systems for farmers to produce seed, improve agronomy etc. because the new varieties will still need the same kinds of trainings too eventually ramp up production. The challenge is that for the some of those new material, the production rate is quite low so that’s why with all that we had, we ended with just over 3 T even within those there are varietal differences.

    • Q: Pigeon pea – I have here on the work plan a variety listed that was not mentioned in the presentation (for foundation seed production) called ICEAP 01415. You did not mention that, but instead mentioned another variety. Is it the same thing or has it got a new name, or what is happening in this case?
    • A: The same explanation given for groundnut in the previous question applies to pigeon pea. ICEAP 01415 variety is already released (by ZAM SEED), but for which we couldn’t produce seed due to proprietorial reasons.
      • Comment: Please (P. Okori) capture this explanation in the report. These details are critical for us to capture in the reports because they help in big in a project like this one to do variety tracking. This goes beyond tracking only the varieties that are being actively funded, but what about the ones that are dropped, picked etc.? Understanding why in each case the decision to drop or pick a variety is also important.

    • Q: I need clarification on the model. There is a point where you mentioned about revolving seed – where farmers to produce and then you recover some seed from them. This is high value seed. So, if you gave each farmer 10 kg and then you get 20 kg yet what they have produced is 60-80 Kgs. What do they do with the rest of the seed? This could be a big loss.
    • A: We are trying to link the farmers to agro-dealers. In our work plan we therefore had an activity of coming up with a database of agro dealers based in the camps where these farmers come from to ensure they are linked with the agro-dealer networks.
      • Follow-up Question: If the seeds go through agro dealers it needs to be packaged. Have you trained farmers on packaging or is this packaging now left to agro dealer? Also in order for seed to be sold through an agro dealer it needs to be licensed via the seed control unit. How does that work, because these seeds produced by farmers have not been evaluated by the SCU?
      • A: The seed produced by the farmers goes through all the processes required for it to be certified. So what the farmers have at the end of the day is certified seed. So the packaging is an agreement then between the farmer and the agro dealer. Agro dealers are already trained on branding and packaging of seed.

    • Q: Could farmers and farmer groups take this on (production of legume seed) if they were given proper support? I know they weren’t quite successful, but is that the model to go for in legume seed production/supply.
    • A: Farmers by themselves can’t take over seed supply. they need to be in an organized mechanism to do this. from what I have observed is for example you have farmers in Lundazi who have high grade QDS for example, that can go into the community. But this can’t be supplied beyond the communities in which the farmers stay. Good Nature Seed Company for example works with some QDS farmers and then package and export even. So the key issue is to have mechanism that allow good seed inspection services all the way to the ground.

    • Q: The seed production alliance that was formed in just a half-day meeting to scale this out (quite ambitious!). How is that seed alliance doing – is it taking off?
    • A: The seed alliance has been a carry-over from the initial Feed the Future project. So, the seed alliance has been there and that particular meeting was aimed at strengthening. The road map is to register it and make it formalize its operation. Currently people share info. on marketing etc.
      • Comment: A number of these kinds of alliance are also project focused and once a project goes, then membership changes and then there is lack of continuity etc. That is also a challenge that is always present with these kinds of alliance.

    • Q: You didn’t mention the number of individual farmers in your presentation. Could you share this?

    • Q: Recycling of seed –farmers decide to do this because sometimes there is lack of seed. If the markets are there and the seed is cheap, maybe they will not recycle.

      • Comment: ZARI involvement on early generation seed production is well underway. The institution has recently established a seed unit which is coming into operation in the next cropping season.

    • Q: You mentioned that there are numerous companies that have expressed willingness to work with ZARI on a number of the new crops and varieties. You have not specified however, the quantities of breeder seed or foundation seed required? What are the guidelines? How do you choose which companies to provide seed to? What are the long-term benefit sharing between the seed companies and ZARI?
    • A: There is still little clarity about how the proprietorial issues between companies, breeders, and the new ZARI seed unit at ZARI. So this is ongoing.

    • Q: What is the difference between field days and short-term trainings? In the reporting, it seems we have lumped all of them together.
    • A: These definitions need to be clarified and reported on uniformly by all project themes.
      • Comment: Generally, we have not documented all our outputs very well. Let’s do better.

    • Q: Are famers adopting all these good agricultural practices you are promoting?
    • A: Yes, the farmers are aware (not adoption yet).

    • Q: I am concerned about the road map for the new varieties of groundnuts (going forward) to release to farmers. For most of them even the production levels were very disappointing. What are we therefore saying about them? Even in a year like this one where the rain was good and all situations quite ideal, why don’t we just go with the best materials as opposed to having so many of these new varieties that aren’t really improving the productivity?
    • A: The data presented by the team on groundnut seed represents three different varieties of groundnuts. We have selected within those which ones to produce and they are way superior to these local varieties when it comes to grain. However, it appears as currently represented that they are lower yielding because this data is for seed and when assessments for seed vs. grain is slightly different. When assessing seed, even a small crack on the groundnut it is discarded while if the same assessment goes for groundnut grain the cracked material is not discarded, but rather still considered as part of the whole. The data we have on what was finally shelled for exampled (for grain) to what was finally graded, you will notice that we are losing at least 30% of the material because of this process and the different handling challenges.

    • Q: What scientific outputs are we getting from this work and activities implemented?
    • A: I think what we are doing now is to look at what/trying to scale out under invested crops. How can you work with private seed companies in combination with approaches like community seed banking etc. That’s what we are trying to figure out and it will lead to a publication.

  • Theme 2: Strengthening OFSP planting material systems – Felistus Chipungu, CIP

    • Q: You said you reached out to over 6000 households in term of vine distribution. How many vines are you giving to farmers? How much is the area planted with these improved vines per household?
    • A: Normally we distribute 1 bundle per household and this gives 100 plants at a spacing of 30 cm on ridges of 6 meters. We expect that as the time goes the farmers expand their OFSP production with the season going on.
      • Follow-up Question: Have you been able to track and establish by how much farmers have been able to expand (during the season) their OFSP plots?
      • A: This is something we have not yet done.

    • Q: Is there any nutritional benefits in terms of enhanced pro-vitamin a when eating OFSP leaves?
    • A: Leaves are eaten quite a lot in Zambia, but there is a specific variety whose leaves are eaten. They have some vitamin A, but mainly it is the protein and some mineral. In general, we promote the consumption of leaves although it’s not our main message.
      • Follow-up Question: I am happy to see your results on the agronomic practices that you have been doing. You get your best results from the ridger. However, the ridger as a system is best only if you don’t re-ridge the ridges every year. You have permanent ridges where you plant your sweet potatoes and keep your ground cover. In the long term, you will have a very sustainable system
      • A: What you are suggesting is not possible because you harvest during the dry season when the soil is hard and you are basically then forced to destroy your ridge.

    • Q: Did you do any trials on intercropping and plant populations?
    • A: Yes, we conducted both trials, but I didn’t report them due to time constraints. The intercropping trials (with maize) went very well. This year it didn’t because you first have to plant maize and then the OFSP after 2 weeks. In the event that there is a dry spell and you delay planting the sweet potato then it doesn’t establish very well.
      • Comment: The team should still report the negative outcome of these trials as an advisory for anybody doing maize-OFSP intercrop to know what to do and how to do it.

    • Q: You carried out activities on post-harvest handling and storage. Did you come up with storage techniques for fresh OFSP?
    • A: There is still isn’t a storage facility that has been verified scientifically where you can store OFSP for several months. CIP is still working on this and it is yet to come. We however, train farmers on proper handling of sweet potato at harvest. Farmers claim they can store until October, but this still needs to be investigated further.

    • Q: How are the DVMs incentivized? How will this be sustained going forward?
    • A: To sustain vine commercialization by communities can only happen if farmers earn from the sale of vines. We have therefore advised DVMs to accept any methods of payment whether its labor, barter trade, chickens etc. Linking them to agro dealers is also a means which we are exploring with them.

    • Q: How long does it take for vines to be planted and replanted before they can be replaced?
    • A: The main challenge with vine storage for long is the virus. So we train them and advise that the moment you start seeing viruses in the field, then they should go to ZARI Msekera research station to get new clean planting materials.

    • Q: I think you should look for the information behind the political boundaries you used as a demarcation for data?
    • A: We are going to do a cross analysis and are expecting a paper on this once this is completed.

    • Comment: Before you put 1 million as the figure for people reached by your radio programs, it would be valuable to justify those numbers by adding a means for verifying the information. For example.
    • Comment: there is always lots of discussion about private sector vs. public sector and usually farmers flip that coin. My own observation, and I think is a fact – every farmer is actually be private sector. As we work with them we should always look at them as a private sector entity.
  • Theme 3: Sustainable intensification of low-input maize-legume systems – Christian Thierfelder, CIMMYT

    • Q: Just seeking clarification on the doubled-up legume CA & GMCC - which rotation does the farmer do? Is it year 1 (maize intercropped with gliricidia), year 2 (the 2 legumes – pigeon pea & soybean). So really when do the cover crops (lab lab) come in?
    • A: It depends really on the farmer’s strategy is – does he have livestock/not? Is he interested in commercial production or subsistence systems? etc. For me I like to think that groundnut-pigeon pea rotation with maize, where you still intercrop something would be a good strategy for some smallholder farmers. Others who are ab it cash constrained would like to probably have gliricidia in hedge rows in their plots and apply the leaves and rotato with groundnuts and sell the groundnuts to COMACO for example. So, it really just depends on the context of the farmer and his/her production strategies.

    • Q: Did you have the chance to collect enough data of the different scaling models and the factors for that explain their success (answering the question why)? If yes, please share.
    • A: Yes, we did some of that. In the detailed data, some of these explanations are provided. For example, in Kapchirwa and Mwase, the majority of lead farmers are women and this helps in ensuring a very comprehensive dissemination. They also have demonstration fields which helped particularly because majority of the farmers wanted to observe first before they pick up a practice.
      • Follow up Comment: Did you do like post-intervention surveys with the farmers to help you triangulate some of your data so that for example you can say – in areas where we had strong communication networks this happened etc. This would make for a good publication. This will help in closing the research loop.
      • Follow up Comment: From the perspectives of CRS we have been working on scaling up (with contributions from this activity). There is some data that Christian didn’t share, but we had really good results from farmers this year, for example the maize-lab lab really looks good if you do it right! Even though the agriculture component of MAWA comes to an end this yea, CRS is going to invest significantly over the coming 2 years to scale this work. In fact, we would like to work also with COMACO to scale the pigeon pea combination as well.

    • Q: Can you provide a little more detail on the maize-gliricidia intercrop, please could you provide a little more detail. For example, how many tones of dry matter did you apply to receive that kind of response? And at what age were the gliricidia trees when you harvested them? Are you able to meet and harvest the required biomass for you to see the desired effect on the main crop (maize)?
      • Follow-up Question: We know from other gliricidia interventions elsewhere that up-take has been elusive, but if you are doing it in Eastern Province do you have any lessons/insights about what is different for the farmers in Eastern Province than from the others elsewhere that gives this technology a chance?
    • A: To be honest, I haven’t learnt much that is different from those other locations where this gliricidia work has been done, but what I believe in is that COMACO have established a model of extension that is different from other models. It is the market incentives approach that they use to rotate maize with groundnut and then they buy the groundnut from the farmers at a premium price if they follow a certain prescribed standard.The technical advice from COMACO is that farmers plant gliricidia trees at a space of 1 meter in the hedge rows, then they have 5 meters difference and then another hedge, 5 rows of maize and then another hedge and this continues. In year 1, they start planting in a ground nut field because the gliricidia crops are young and very susceptible, then in year 2 they start pruning those leaves.

    • Q: The fertilizer – was it only nitrogen or also included phosphorus and how will you make up for that? How was the program with COMACO able to assure the farmers didn’t apply chemical fertilizers in the plots to ensure that your results as presented were accurate? Was there any data taken to give insight on what was the total package of interventions and what was the actually the fertilizer rate?
    • A: We made a pre-condition to participate in the study, that they follow certain standards. So we selected farmers that didn’t apply mineral fertilizer and those that did not apply fertilizer, but had gliricidia plants. We provided all the farmers with a uniform maize variety and then we tried our best to get as much uniformity on planting days etc. On average the fertilizer farmers applied 52 Kg of compound leaf and on the average, they applied 55 kg of urea.
    • How do I ensure that the systems also have P – I don’t know. Probably we have to do a comprehensive yield study. Much more could be done to understand this system better. We have taken soil samples that are still being analyzed. However, there are lots of benefits that we can see like – increased infiltration, increased soil carbon that we can measure, but the bottom line is if the farmers are not willing to put in the extra labor to take the leaves and spread them on the plot then the system will not take off. But also with this market incentive approach driven by COMACO, then there may be a chance.

    • Q: You have suggested that doubled-up is ready for scaling out. However, you also said that there is no benefit even in terms of maize rotation with the doubling up or in terms of actual grain yield. So why is it ready for scaling if this is the case?
    • A: The proof of concept was there and it shows positive response under CA. However, there are gaps that still invite more research questions like what are the longer-term effects of doubled up legume under CA for example. I however believe that it is still ready for scaling (rotated with maize and lab-lab) because it helps stop army worms. So, the rotational benefits are always there in the short-term. The doubled-up legume system is released in Malawi formally by the ministry of Agriculture. The work being done by the team is therefore customizing what has been done successfully on the other side.

    • Q: There are still some activities on your work plan that I haven’t seen presented, for example ratooning and manure application etc.
    • A: We did the work and have the data, only challenge was that the time we were given for presentation was not enough for us to present everything. The details should be on the report.
      • Comment: A general observation for all the groups – Does access to knowledge about improved technology translate to improved adoption? The answer is No. So, it seems that we have not paid attention to the pathways for accessing the technologies and may be connected to very different things. Probably we should next time focus more effort on this.

    • Q: We have the same challenge in DTMASS project of farmers not knowing the sizes of their farms and that affects a lot of design and advice. Has anybody got advice on how to get around this issue? This was a huge confounder for us in DTMAS project.
    • A: Tobacco companies gather the info. with farmers through cellphones.
    • A: It depends on what farmers are growing, but you can get a pretty good rough estimate depending on the quantity of maize seed they plant. However, planting rate varies a lot, but generally can be guided by the nuances of the area or location. However, this assumes that a farmer knows the correct seeding rate.
    • A: When you use the lead farmer approach or extension approach, we are still not going to get the correct farm size, unless they are trained. Maybe for commercial farmers like Tobacco its different, but for our small-scale farmers it is still not very easy to establish accurate farm size.
    • A: Most often in our work we use farmer recall establishing farm size. However, the information you get depends upon the intended use (as the farmer perceives it). For example, if it is a government official bringing FISP then the farmer would bump up the size of the field, but if he again is dealing with a tax officer from the government looking to charge land rates then he will reduce the size of the land. However now what is changing is that there are simple phone applications which you can use to walk around the plot and get the exact measurement. This uses GPS, but it is not exactly accurate.

    • Q: You showed data on levels of aflatoxin contamination in groundnuts and maize. At what cropping stage was this data collected? What is the basis of how you generated the profitability of Aflasafe?
    • A: For the surveillance, we were looking at storage, but for the Aflasafe efficacy trials and profitability assessment we do analysis when the farmers have just harvested the crop. So, this is more or less at harvest and not storage.

    • Q: Have you developed a production process module which the private sector can use to produce Aflasafe in country? You mentioned ZamSeed and Share Africa as organizations that are interested.
    • A: In Tanzania, they are using the modular system with a roaster and simple seed treater that can be used to do it in a cheap way. Recently they added a packaging system as well. A laboratory is also needed to produce the strains safely. So, it shouldn’t cost much. According to the consultant we hired to help with the business plan, for you to start producing Aflasafe here in Zambia it would cost you roughly 53,000 USD – that is the estimate.

    • Q: What quality control measure are going to be therefore Aflasafe?

    • Q: What is your estimate of the time we still have to getting the registration of Aflasafe?
    • A: We have made significant strides with regards to signing the technology transfer agreements. ZEMA is willing to work with us on registering the product. Probably the next 1 – 2 months. Whether they will accept our dossier or not will be determined by the bodies reviewing the application.

    • Q: What can we learn from other countries where IITA has introduced Aflasafe in terms of creating awareness on Aflasafe?
    • A: Different countries have used different approaches. Kenya for example has commercialized Aflasafe, but they are also using the public (Gov’t) led approach. On the other hand in Nigeria it has gone almost fully commercial with farmers willing to pay a premium price for the product, particularly where they are appreciative of the value of the Aflasafe product.

    • Q: Your data shows 730 $/ T for groundnut treated with Aflasafe in the local market? Please explain this and the other figures you presented in your cost-benefit analysis. Are these retail prices?

    • Q: Is there a variety difference for Aflatoxin
    • A: Right now it is almost impossible to get a groundnut plant that will give you zero aflatoxin because aflatoxin doesn’t affect the crop.
      • Comment: We probably need to rethink the approach for scaling Aflasafe. The model being implemented by Kenya (which is led by public sector) is financed and led by large part in most parts of the world. Contamination also depends on location and environment.

    • Q: When we talked about Aflasafe and aflatoxin a couple of years ago there was suggestion that with different arrangement in the cropping systems – more diversification, more CA maybe you can reduce the aflatoxin level. Did anybody do that?
    • A: We didn’t follow this up, but other data have shown that late planting plays a role. Intercropping also plays a role in enhancing contamination. In Zimbabwe, what we are seeing is if you rotate with cotton you get higher aflatoxin levels etc.

Group exercise: To assess how much has been achieved in terms of cross fertilization between themes and Malawi/Zambia

Cross-country learnings that took place between Zambia and Malawi - Africa RISING going to scale in Eastern Province of Zambia. Photo credit: Jonathan Odhong’/ IITA.

DAY TWO - 8 September


Assignment: Reflect on all the presentations that were made yesterday. Discuss around your tables and identify: (a) some of the things you liked most, and (b) the things you didn't like.
What we liked about yesterday’s sessions
What we didn’t like about yesterday’s sessions
There were very nice and lively discussions about the four presentations. That was really exceptional compared to the previous years where everybody would present their results, but we didn’t interrogate to the depth that we did this time.
We did not like is also what emerged from the presentations that there wasn’t enough money to implement and finish some of the work properly.
Most of the work by project partners was pretty much done well done.
The word “exit” is also something we were hoping not to hear a lot, but this came up quite severally.

It was clear that cross-fertilization never happened across the themes. However, there were also common lessons and technologies exchanged between some of the themes for example OFSP learnt from CA theme, Malawi team gave some knowledge to the Zambia CA team.
Engagement of the private sector in the activities across the themes was quite remarkable. For example, we have a lot of breeder seed now available, COMACO engaged in processing, engagement of share Africa in technology dissemination particularly in Aflasafe.
Information on the storage of sweet potato for future use is still lacking.
Engaging media in technology upscaling by OFSP team was a great thing to hear about.
Engagement of small scale producers of seed, it is still not clear where the outlets (markets) for the surplus seed produced is.
It was great to hear that theme 1 (seed production) this year the target was reached because it was a good year with rain and generally favourable weather conditions.
We still however have not solved the issues of the legume seed systems and we think that SARI really needs immense support to sort out the issue of breeder and foundation seed and then give it to interested companies to multiply these seeds.
We think that theme 3 (low input maize-legume systems) did a very good job too despite being the broadest theme. They also took the opportunity to collect data from the demos to further validate the technologies and plan to publish these results. This is a nice additional product from the work.
The Aflasafe registration process is really slow, and this is probably due to a limited awareness about the problems and health risks posed by aflatoxins particularly in maize by the authorities. So there is still work to do in creating awareness.
The OFSP vine production is now well established and could be self-sustaining in future. The team have also been very active in scaling the whole value chain and that was impressive!

Most targets by the themes were met in general
The agronomy part still needs to be sharpened because it underpins the higher yields.

The production of early generation seed was relatively met; however, the concern now lies with the sustainability of the same.

There is a lot of seed varieties availed to the farmer by theme 1. This could confuse the farmer and make it difficult for them to make a choice.
The market in incentive approach to trigger technology adoption emerged as a good strategy.
The uncertainty of the future/lack of alternative funding to continue some of the advanced activities that are still considered as lose ends by the project partners.

Africa RISING going to scale in E. Province of Zambia - legacy, loose ends and exit strategy - group activity

Instructions:Participants to discuss in their themes the following points:
    • For the farmers?
    • For the global knowledge base

Loose ends
    • Those that don’t require any additional funding and when they would be finished?
    • Those that require additional funding, how much is required and by when would they finish?

Exit strategy
    • What are the key things you are going to do as part of an exit strategy as the project comes to an end?
    • Including plans for communication and orderly termination of engagement with the farmers

Outputs from each group

Theme 1
Theme 2
Theme 3
Theme 4
brochures or fliers (crop/ agronomy).
Availability of breeder seed in tissue culture laboratory at Mt Makulu.
Increased uptake of manual and animal traction CA systems in target communities.
Aflasafe Product, dossiers, TTA

Breeder, Basic and Certified seed of improved varieties.
The screen house structure for foundation seed and capacity building to preserves, multiply and disseminates foundation seed.
Scaling of herbicide use, rotations, and intercropping.
Postgraduate Students

Seed systems (formal & informal- partners mobilized).
Availability of trained Decentralized Vine Multipliers in Communities.
Increased adoption of soybeans and cowpeas in target districts.
Laboratories: Continuity for aflatoxin testing + Trainings.

Two publications.
Availability of stakeholders that can provide technical backstopping to Vine Multipliers and Root Producers.
New knowledge about other green manures and grain legumes (pigeonpea) – and other ways of planting them (doubled-up, intercropping).
Linkages established: Expected end users, private sector.

Legacy (Global Knowledge Base)
  • Sweet potato production handbook (under development)
  • Two conference papers
  • Two success stories (Epulani Daka and Aron Mumba)
  • Availability of Production and COMACO extension bulletin on maize/gliricidia systems- with key data for scaling.
  • Other technical bulleting in progress - on maize-pigeonpea; doubled up legume system; maize/lablab.
  • Several peer-reviewed papers published and in the pipeline. Nutritional Messages that were developed.
Publications, Fliers.

Scaling approaches:
  • Market incentive approach (using premiums for environmentally friendly ag systems) works for scaling of NRM related technologies (e.g. maize/gliricidia; CA systems)
  • Strong partnership model under Africa RISING using innovation systems supports scaling
  • Research in Development (CIMMYT-CRS/COMACO/TLC) leads to faster and more sustained uptake.

Loose ends
Economic analyses and package them in a language that farmers can understand for dissemination (9 months).
Development of manuscripts using the available database, to be done by mid-November).
CA systems trials and baby trials will be put on hold and lessons documented.
Aflasafe Product registration.

Develop a document that shall describe the technologies for extension agents such as CRS, COMACO etc. 9 months.
Sweet potato in ground storage- a technology under practice by farmers need validation scientifically; ZARI will take it up.
Manure trials will be discontinued.
Product Accessibility: Is it readily available?
Manufacturing facility- local & readily available product.
  • QA/QC laboratory for Inoculum production.
  • Awareness creation.

Develop and strengthen self-organized seed banks (2 years).
Two journal publications, by December 2017. (US $3,000.00/ publication).
All stakeholders will be informed through a consultative process about the end.
Private/ Public sector engagement.
  • Policy briefs: once registration is done
  • Stakeholder meetings: Who,

Engage different models to saturate improved seeds to the communities (2 years) - $100 000.
Publication and launch of the sweet potato production handbook, by December 2017 (US $ 10,000.00).
Doubled-up legume trials need one more year of data to be completed.

Translation and printing of the sweet potato production handbook, by December 2017 (US $ 7,000.00).
Maize/Gliricidia (COMACO) trials need one more year to improve the value of the data – suggested complementary activities: Gross-margin analysis soil fertility assessment.

Two promising genotypes identified and require further evaluations by ZARI and SCCI for release (US $ 10,000.00) (No ending date because it’s an on-going activity – Harry Ngoma).
Study adoption dynamics.

On-farm trials:
  • GMCC trials (CRS) need more seasons’ data to support CRS with evidence for scaling – but reduction to only 24 studied farmers.

On-station trials:
  • GMCC trials (CRS) need two more seasons’ data to better assess the real potential – additional fertility study at the end required.
  • Ratooning and Gliricidia trial on station need two more years to understand the full benefit of the system.

Support scaling:
  • Support Kamano seeds with inbred lines for two QPM hybrids- campaigning for these QPMs.

Exit strategy
Conduct a meeting in each district, which shall include farmers, extension department and local authority.
Transfer the production of breeder seed (TC) and foundation seed (screen houses) to ZARI.
Hand over technologies to NGOs and support their scaling activities with evidence products.
Source funds

Discuss management of seed systems with ZARI.
Document and provide the list of vine multipliers to all DACOs to facilitate registration, technical backstopping, and marketing of vines.
Follow appropriate district procedures to inform stakeholders about the discontinuation.
Re-submission registration dossiers.

Transfer of extension materials to relevant authorities (PACO).
Transfer of assets to ZARI.

DACOs, Extension officers, Community Agro-dealers, Media.

Project wind up meeting with partners and stakeholders on OFSP production and nutrition to present successes and gaps, also asses their interventions, areas of operations and number of beneficiaries reached ($10,000).

Questions / comments and feedback

Question: Some of the items you put on legacy like – provide brochures and fliers if not already done should be categorized as loose ends.

Answer: These materials have been produced before at the end of the research project in Zambia and are listed as legacy because we have the materials and in case they are needed we can provide them.

Comment: These materials are then a legacy product for the 2-year initial research project. The should be shared with Jonathan for proper repository.
Question: Is it confirmed that ZARI will take up scientific validation of sweet potato in ground storage activity?
Answer: Yes, it is confirmed at on-station level using the funds received from the government.
Comment: There is very promising research in the work by the team, but we still need more solid data set for us to move forward with scaling of these work by the team.

Comment: For some of the technologies we need just one year’s data (e.g. for doubled-up legume).

Question: What does economic analysis mean in the first bullet of your loose ends (Economic analyses and package them in a language that farmers can understand for dissemination)?

Answer: Yes, we’d like to conduct an economic analysis of seed production for farmers who produce QDS. Farmers need to appreciate what they will gain economically when they decide to produce both seed and grain. This information would be useful for future scaling, but could also go into the exit strategy.
Comment: This is very interesting (validation of sweet potato in ground storage activity), but it should also go with the point mentioned earlier by the team about use of vines for feeding livestock. This will ensure that they are an integrated activity.
Question: The budget presented states that 200,000 USD is required. Is this only for 1 year or it is for the 2 years earlier on alluded to in your presentation?

Answer: It is 200 k per year, so 400,000 USD total.

Comment: We know for example now that this team has been using community seedbanks as part of the strategy to saturate the communities in which they work with legume seeds. So the point on bullet 3 of your loose ends is not really to develop the seed banks but rather to just hand over those seed banks to either the NGOs or government officers present within those communities. This could actually be reflected as an exit strategy.
Question: Why do you need USD 1,000 for publishing papers?
Answer: Buying open access rights for publications is even more expensive than this?

Question: Has staff time been catered for in the proposed budget for publication of materials?
Comment: The team needs to indicate for which technology what they need in terms of time and funds.

Comment: It would be good to have all the teams to host these community exit meetings together, probably one meeting g at the District level bringing together key stakeholders and the lead farmers, PACO, DACO, Camp Extension Officers etc (as Africa RISING) and not as themes. Mulundu Mwila to coordinate this activity.

Comment: The first bullet there on the legacy of the team (Increased uptake of manual and animal traction CA systems in target communities.) is too large/broad that it is hard to understand what you mean. You should mention things like you’ve been successful in improving conservation agricultural technologies, maize-legume production very well promoted especially soyabeans. This is largely due to the demos done by the team.

Closing remarks

Harry Ngoma

  • I don’t have much to say except say thank you to all of you. The energy was high throughout and impressive. As a native of the Eastern Province I can attest to the fact that most farmers have confessed to the impact of the work implemented by this project team in the province. The longer-term benefits of course will follow in the coming years.
  • We really need to pat ourselves on the back and celebrate our success. We did quite a lot of work compared to other country missions (relative to the funds we had) and have been sharing our results very well with Washington and we have had many visits from Washington to our activity sites. It would be much better that we still continue to document our achievements and success stories so that we share these with the wider global community.
  • With regards to the status of funding, we are currently in an uncertain period with regards to budgeting. Zambia is also not selected as part of the Feed the Future 2.0 and as such we do not have long terms assurances for funding and therefore can’t make any commitment at the moment about what is going to happen, but we are very much aware about the value of investing in research and technology as USAID Zambia and we hope that the Government of Zambia is going to see this as a seed that needs to be continued.
  • Currently the US Government has got different challenges, but I think they are also reforming some of the subsidies that the government have been giving for example the FISP to now using electronic vouchers. Hopefully this will release money that can go into research. But In as far as Africa RISING is concerned this money that comes out of Washington runs up to 2020 so if indeed there are some of these loose ends that we have identified and do ‘t require lots of money, then our team here in Lusaka is convinced to still continue supporting that agenda.
  • Personally, I am convinced of the value of that agenda. I cannot promise anything concrete for now, but I will be in touch with the Project Manager (Irmgard) to further discuss the next steps. Thank you so much and we will be in touch, this is not the end.

Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon

  • The sad moment has come. We are not only closing a meeting, but also closing a project! I am still not giving up hope that some of our activities will still continue through other avenues, but for the moment let us consider the project concluded by 30 September.
  • When we started 2 years ago, it appeared too distant that all will eventually come to an end and time just flies! It has been a great pleasure for me to work with all of you. In my thanks, I have to include Mulundu whom we have once again called on to coordinate the last activity bringing together partners for this activity. Thank you for that.
  • I hope this is also noted within your organization. I also need to thank David Chikoye and his team here at IITA Lusaka like Anayawa and the finance team. You have been supporting us over the past two years with the financial and administrative assistance. Please convey our thank to colleagues at the office.
  • I also want to thank Jonathan for facilitating us during this meeting and helping the team in different ways with the team. Also Mateete, our chief whip always looking at the science aspects of the work we have been doing and also as my right hand in management of the project.
  • I am afraid we may not come together again in a group like this, but we will follow up with more bilateral discussions to seek ways of moving the activities (loose ends) from this project forward.
  • I also thank USAID for the supports and the immense confidence you had in Africa RISING two years ago.

David Chikoye

  • Before I declare the project closed, let me do a little preaching. The Bible says there is time for everything. But also Bob marley in one of his songs says that when one door is closed, another one is opened. Yes, the project comes to an end 30 September. But for me what is important is that we are not employees of the project, all the institutions represented here – ZARI, ICRISAT, IITA etc will all continue to exist after this project.
  • The project was just a glue holding us together over the past two years – maybe we can extend it to 7 years, we have developed a strong partnership. We know who is doing what, where. Right now, if I get a phone call from one company looking for 30 T of groundnut, usually what I would tell them is “You are lost, this is not our mandate crops at IITA. Please find your way to ICRISAT!”. However, after t=interacting as colleagues in this project, that is now not what I will say, I will say please take a pen and write down the contacts for Patrick Okori at ICRISAT or Kanenga Kennedy at ZARI.
  • So using our own little influence, let us continue to help the farmers. Let me therefore thank all the partners represented here and even those not here, but have contributed to the project. Thank you all.
  • Let me once more thank Irmgard and the Africa RISING team for having steered us through all the bumpy roads. These are people who work in the background and we mostly remember them only when we are looking for money e.t.c.
  • I also would like to thank the Zambia team – the partners and staff at IITA. I did yesterday thank the donor (USAID), but let us do this again.
  • I hope we will continue working together in future. Wishing all of you safe travels. It is my pleasure to officially close the workshop.

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