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Improving lives by solving problems in agriculture and the environment

Crop management: Building capacity, providing expert advice

Crop management: Building capacity, providing expert advice

CABI improves crop production and quality by helping farmers to grow more healthy, high quality and safe produce that can be sold in domestic and global markets. This leads to a reliable, sustainable and cost effective supply source, and enables farmers to improve their income and raise their family’s quality of life.

We maximize crop yields by preventing losses to pests and diseases, and support producers in complying with food safety and SPS standards. As well as allowing developing countries to benefit fully from trade opportunities and to access lucrative new markets, this results in a better quality crop which farmers can sell at a higher price.

To make our work sustainable and extend its impact we also provide knowledge and training to national extension workers, researchers, scientists and suppliers of agro-inputs (pesticides and fertilisers) so that they give the best advice and support to farmers.

Our crop management work involves:

  • Training farmers in best practice agricultural skills and techniques, including better ways of using pesticides
  • Raising awareness of consumers’ expectations and safety concerns
  • Improving access to practical, farmer-friendly information and resources – using factsheets, online knowledge hubs and mobile advisory services
  • Developing sustainable ways of managing pests, including using IPM techniques as part of a better pest management approach
  • Advising farmers on how to identify and manage plant health problems, for instance through our network of plant clinics
  • Introducing new processing and storage techniques that reduce post-harvest loss due to spoilage

Guaranteeing to coffee farmers in Ethiopia and Rwanda

Coffee plays a critical role in the economies of Ethiopia and Rwanda. Despite the optimum soil and climate conditions and high demand for coffee grown, the industry in these countries has not performed to its full potential. Revitalizing coffee quality and production will allow small-scale growers to increase their incomes and lift themselves out of poverty.

CABI, together with its partners, is helping growers to sustainably grow their businesses in
producing and processing Arabica coffee. We do this by building their capacity in good agronomic and processing practices and helping them get access to finance, processing equipment and market information.

A credit guarantee scheme helps provide cooperatives with access to affordable commercial
loans. This helps growers obtain and upgrade processing equipment which, in turn, improves the quality of coffee produced and the premiums that farmers can attract. CABI gives growers relevant market information so they can plan production and optimize their returns
by selling their coffee to market at the right time. In parallel, loan officers in participating banks in Ethiopia and Rwanda are being trained to understand more about coffee production. We have helped improve business and governance skills in over 40 cooperatives, which are already leading to improved professionalism. Primary cooperatives are now able to prepare realistic and bankable business plans.

Guaranteed loans are being disbursed to cooperatives in Ethiopia and Rwanda with a high number of loans being paid back, especially in Ethiopia. We have led the training of 100 extension and cooperative promotion agents and experts on issues covering coffee production, processing, quality, marketing and the management of farmer associations.

Farmer training and demonstrations have promoted the sharing of experiences, information and ideas in Ethiopia and Rwanda. 

“Without such external support, we would not have any opportunity to access bank loans. We have reached the stage of hiring workers and we have a plan to own a vehicle. We have a bright future ahead of us as we have established a strong relationship with the bank.”
Gobena Godana, Chairman, Shola Koda Cooperative Society, Ethiopia

 

DONORS
Common Fund for Commodities
International Coffee Organization
Rabobank Foundation

PARTNERS
Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Ethiopia
National Agriculture Export Development Board NAEB), Rwanda
The Cooperative Bank of Oromia (CBO)
Banque Populaire du Rwanda (UBPR)