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Mainstreaming Agro-biodiversity Conservation into the Farming Systems of Ethiopia


Titre : Mainstreaming Agro-biodiversity Conservation into the Farming Systems of Ethiopia

Pays : Ethiopia

Focal Area : Biodiversity

Approuvé le : 2008-11-13

Organisme d’exécution : Government of Ethiopia _ GEF Agency : United Nations Development Programme

Project Objective and Expected Outcomes
The overall Goal of the project is “Improved in situ conservation of agro-biodiversity resources (including crop wild relatives) secures biodiversity values, ensures food security and sustains human well being”. To achieve this, the conservation values of Ethiopia’s rich agro-biodiversity endowment have to be considered in agricultural sector planning and development, so that farm productivity and food security are improved while simultaneously securing the survival of important agro-biodiversity. The Objective of the project is therefore : “To provide farming communities with incentives (policies, capacity, markets and knowledge) to mainstream conservation of agro-biodiversity resources, including CWR, into their farming systems.

This will be achieved through three outcomes that overcome the barriers identified above :
*1. Component 1 : Enabling policy and institutional framework supporting in-situ conservation of agro-biodiversity and wild crop relatives : Under this component, the project will promote policies that encourage farmer adoption of FV and conservation of CWR. Three key outcomes will be delivered : 1) Comprehensive agro-BD friendly policies developed and approved to promote agro-biodiversity friendly production practices (the importance of Agro-BD in food security and socio-economic development properly understood by policy makers at the national and regional levels). The focus will be on core agricultural policies and their links to forestry policies, which will be fully identified during the PPG). 2) The National Extension Service providing farmers with knowledge based extension technology to promote farmer varieties (and conservation of agro-biodiversity within the current production systems). 3) Accelerated implementation of the extension package piloted in 4 sites (each using one important crop as entry point to agro-BD friendly production practices). Pilot sites will be selected on the basis of “centres of diversity” for coffee, teff, enset, sesame and noug seeds. Crop combinations may be used (to be determined during the PPG stage). At each site, the extension package will be tested (as well as market incentives under component 2), lessons will be learnt and used to finalise the model for national application (and expansion to cover other crops). Two issues ; climate change and gender will receive special attention in piloting.
*. Component 2 : Markets provide incentive for farmer uptake of agro-biodiversity friendly practices : The project will identify and promote promising market incentives (underpinned by policy and capacity support under component 1), to increase trading in agro-biodiversity friendly products in order to encourage farmers to adopt sound production practices. Care will be taken to avoid incentive measures that may promote unsustainable behaviour (such as increased demand due to availability of markets leading to overharvesting). In this regard, a framework for analysis will be adopted that systematically allows differentiation between positive and negative incentives. Incentives will be targeted to the three key players : farmers, consumers, and support system actors (owners of businesses, policy makers, extension, research, NGOs, seed producers and other service providers). Specific outcomes will include : International and national demand for agro-BD friendly products increased ; Agro-biodiversity-friendly products available in local and international markets ; Business and financial capacity in place to produce agro-BD friendly products and services in 4 pilot sites ; Increased and stable income from certified and non certified products grown in agro-BD friendly areas (shade coffee farms and coffee forest and in landscapes containing wild relatives of important cereals and pulses) in 4 pilot sites. Information to support market related decisions will be collected during the PPG stage. This will include a general market overview / study for the situation of speciality coffee, tef and durum wheat : Market actors and their roles, consumer demand, possible partners, government regulations, development of exports, analysis of risks and opportunities. PPG work will include the development of marketing plans, and identification of partners (marketing agency, partners for communication). Work on development of a suitable certification scheme for crops of economic importance will be undertaken.
* Component 3 : Crop Wild Relatives are conserved in in-situ gene bank or SET ASIDE areas to ensure that farming systems integrate CWR areas into overall landscape plans : Agro-biodiversity exists as a result of human interaction with plant species and the landscape via agricultural systems over very long periods of time. Interaction of FV with CWR is particularly important in allowing a greater proximity-mix of crops, enhancing probability of mixing of genes, and hence the potential for new varieties to emerge. These wild varieties contain a great deal of genetic diversity necessary for survival, and although they are low producers, their proximity to cultivated cousins allows for genetic traits to pass back and forth from weedy to cropped varieties, further facilitating a rich diversity of genetic possibility in the adaptation of new varieties and the maintenance of existing genetically diverse varieties. Gene banks on the other hand only capture ’snapshots’ of genetic material that, once ‘banked’ are unable to express new forms which result from adaptation to changing environments and conditions, and the emerging pests and diseases which these produce. The project intends to increase food production while maintaining this high level of interaction of domesticated and wild genes. Wild areas will therefore be set aside for the economic crops for which Ethiopia is the centre of genetic origin (coffee, enset, teff, durum wheat, sesame and noug seed) and managed to continue nurturing wild relatives. Institutional set up for the effective maintenance of the wild patches will be established and institutions provided with the operational efficiencies required for planning and managing these in-situ gene banks for prosperity (and Ethiopia’s food security and economic growth).

Informations financières
GEF Grant : 4,013,600 USD
Cofinancing Total : 4,700,000 USD
Project Cost : 8,713,600 USD

GEF (Global Environment Facility)

Page publiée le 1er août 2012, mise à jour le 17 juin 2019