Inades-Formation Burundi, in order to increase rice production in the developed marshes, has introduced the technique of “Intensive Rice Growing System (IRS)” in the 3 rice cooperatives it supports in Maramvya in the commune of Mutimbuzi in the west of the country, and in Kabo and Kibaba in the commune of Nyanza-lac in the south of the country. One hundred and twenty (120) rice growers, members of these 3 rice cooperatives, have been trained in the SRI technique.

After the theoretical and practical training, held in December 2018 and 2019, the trained rice farmers set up control plots of about 14.5 ha in the three marshlands (Kibaba, Kabo and Maramvya). These control plots, cultivated using the SRI technique, were set up near another field cultivated without applying this method, in order to allow comparison between yields.

Theoretical training

While the average rice yield per hectare without SRI was less than 4 tons per hectare depending on the locality, the average rice yield obtained with the SRI technique was 6.5 tons per hectare. The average yield of rice obtained with the SRI technique was 6.5 tons per hectare. SRI promotes the physiological potential of rice, which can develop its capacity to form a large number of tillers. Rice production thus doubled or even tripled in terms of tonnage per hectare in the 3 rice cooperatives of Maramvya, Nyanza-lac and Kabo during the B 2018 and B 2019 growing seasons. The production obtained has thus made it possible to recoup the high investments of the hydro-agricultural works carried out in the project’s areas of action.

In view of the good results obtained during the first trials of the SRI, the number of members of the cooperatives has continued to grow, and the number of rice growers who have adopted the SRI has increased from 165 to 587.

Transplanted plot

Definite advantages for rice farmers

With the SRI method, rice farmers have realized 3 types of advantages:

  • A saving of seeds 

For one hectare, SRI requires row sowing with a seedling spacing of 25 x 25 cm and a seed quantity of 4.8 kg of seed per hectare, whereas previously rice farmers used more than 100 kg of seed per hectare.

  • An increase in rice yield per hectare

The average production recorded per hectare depends on the locality. Indeed, by respecting the conditions of physiological development of rice with SRI, for the cooperatives of Nyanza-lac (Kabo and Kibaba), the yields obtained oscillate around 8 to 9 tons per hectare, while in the cooperative of Maramvya, an average of 6 to 8 tons per hectare was obtained.

  • Saving water 

Contrary to popular belief, rice is not an aquatic plant. SRI is a minimum water rice crop. The necessary amount of water is given when needed. During the vegetative phase, a water layer of 1 cm must be maintained, and then the rice fields are emptied to oxygenate the soil.

Rice in the flowering stage

The introduction of SRI in the three cooperatives supported by Inades-Formation Burundi was carried out within the framework of the programme “Promotion of food sovereignty and women’s participation in rural Burundi”, financed by the Basque Government.

In view of the more than satisfactory results, Inades-Formation Burundi will continue to disseminate this method in all the areas where the beneficiary members of the three cooperatives cultivate rice.

Rice harvest

Inades-Formation Burundi

The PRCCRCC project (Project for Community Capacity Building for Climate Change Resilience) trained its beneficiaries, including women, in the manufacture of improved stoves using less wood as one of the measures for adaptation to climate change. As it is women who are directly involved in the search for cooking wood and in the cooking of food, special emphasis was placed on their participation in promoting these stoves at the level of the project’s intervention hills.

The improved stoves that use little wood enable the beneficiaries, including women, to consume less wood for cooking and therefore to exert less pressure on the afforestation. Another finding is that these stoves reduce the cooking time of food and produce little smoke during cooking.

 

A core group of trainers to facilitate the sharing of experiences among project beneficiaries.

The PRCCRCC project trained a core group of trainers comprising 77 beneficiaries, including 36 men and 41 women, in the six intervention hills on the techniques for making mobile improved cookstoves and the construction of fixed stoves using little wood, with the aim of enabling a large number of beneficiaries to have access to these techniques.

Women’s participation is primarily in the work of extracting and preparing the clay prior to manufacture, and in the baking of these stoves. Women, as the first users of these improved stoves, are involved in their popularization at the hill level by extolling their virtues. Since the training to date, 938 improved stoves have been made by the project beneficiaries and they continue to make them.

The use of improved stoves at the level of beneficiary households is a climate change adaptation measure that mitigates the effects in the intervention area and also halves the amount of wood that households used to consume with traditional three-stone stoves.

These stoves do not emit smoke during cooking. This means that less greenhouse gases are released into the atmosphere, which increases resilience to climate change.

 

An activity that values women.

The manufacture of these improved cookstoves is an income-generating activity for the beneficiaries, including women, as it provides additional household income. This income from the sale of these fireplaces enables the beneficiaries, especially women, to buy small livestock that provides them with organic manure and enables them to increase production in their kitchen gardens. The trained women are very active and are proud to be able to make these stoves for the entire project area.

Kigali forum on agro-ecology: agro-ecological transition in motion

Under the Support Programme for economic initiatives that contribute to ecological and social transformation of rural areas (PAYROLL) implemented in the Sahel (Mali, Niger, Burkina) and Great Lakes (Burundi, Rwanda, DRC) , Inades Formation Burundi, Deputy Regional representative PAIES, ACORD Rwanda, a program partner in Rwanda, organized from 14 to 16 September 2016 a forum on agro-ecology in collaboration with the Catholic Committee against Hunger for Development ( CCFD) – Terre Solidaire and the French Development Agency (AFD).

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Forum Opening Address by the Director General of Planning in the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources of Rwanda

From 14 to 16 September 2016 was held in the Hotel Nobleza Kigali – Rwanda, a forum on agro-ecology with the theme: “Agroecology in the Great Lakes Region: approaches, issues, practices and perspective. ” The Forum, to be part of the Support Programme for economic initiatives that contribute to ecological and social transformation of rural areas (PAYROLL) implemented in the Sahel (Mali, Niger, Burkina) and Great Lakes ( Burundi, Rwanda, DRC), was organized by Inades Formation Burundi which ensures regional coordination program for the Great Lakes region and ACORD Rwanda project partner in Rwanda, in collaboration with the Catholic Committee against Hunger and for Development ( CCFD) – Terre Solidaire and the French Development Agency (AFD).

The objective of the forum was to create a first space for exchange of experience between practitioners of agroecology, especially among the program partners, and promote the sharing of analysis around the agro-ecological approach and its issues in the Great Lakes.

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A view of the participants

The opening of the forum was made by the Director General in charge of Planning at the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources of Rwanda. He saw the participation of partners PAIES in the Great Lakes region and the Sahel, as well as other organizations working in the field of agro-ecology in SSA. Participants in the number 46 representing 32 organizations from Rwanda, Burundi, DRC, Uganda, South Africa, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, and Niger.

A rich panel in knowledge and experience on agroecology

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Panelists “What realities of public-private international dynamics and climate smart agriculture in the Great Lakes region”?

Besides presentations that allowed a clarification of the theoretical concepts on agro ecology, climate change, its effects on the environment and international negotiations related thereto, the protection of the genetic heritage and the legal arsenal used in this field, etc. participants benefited from practitioners testimonies of agroecology from CSOs in all countries covered by the program PAIES but also other African experiences and Northern partner organizations.

Significant challenges

Participants identified the challenges promoting agroecology faces. These include:

  • Weight multinationals that impose an agricultural model predator environmental condition of targets and enticing names, influence the agricultural policies of the North and South, by resorting to corruption needs, accelerate the passage heritage genetic public to the private domain to great fanfare unjust legal provisions, introduced in the nature of the seed programmed degeneration is a terrible threat to the living plant;
  • The gradual withdrawal of many African states in agricultural investment to the benefit of private operators for whom the food is just a commercial good, with prioritization of agricultural trade policies at the expense of food policies concerned with social justice and human dignity ;
  • The need to sustain the expertise peasant view of the demands of conservation and improvement of the genetic heritage; etc.

Relevant Forum recommendations

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Group work

The forum has made relevant recommendations including:

  • the need for clarification of the priorities of African agriculture and concepts we use in agro-ecology;
  • improving performance indicators and promotional material change in agro-ecology that needs to feed all the people to ensure its credibility;
  • the need to technically assist farmers in the production of improved seeds instead of expect the state to do this work; the establishment of local certifications mechanisms inexpensive compared to current practices, too expensive for farmers’ organizations;
  • continuing advocacy against the hegemony of agricultural multinationals, against land grabbing and to strengthening developing countries negotiating skills;
  • better monitoring of the upcoming Rabat conference on the link between climate and agriculture;
  • organization in each country round tables for exchange on the results and recommendations of the Kigali forum, etc.

A huge yard for Inades-Formation for the common good

Torchbearer for the promotion of sustainable family farming, Inades-Formation is determined to contribute to the success of this major project to agroecology, which must articulate three key dimensions to have any chance of success: practices, research (case study) and the social movement (citizen awareness and advocacy). The man needs to produce without destroying, feed the world looking after the planet and promoting food sovereignty. Extensive program in perspective.

PAIES: a program to promote and encourage the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices practices, respectful of ecosystems and natural resources

The overall objective of PAIES is “to promote a process of social and ecological transformation of rural areas in the Sahel region and the Great Lakes region, enabling populations of these rural areas to live well and sustainably while being supportive of other territories. ” In the Great Lakes region, the program is jointly funded by the CCFD-Terre Solidaire and the AFD and is implemented in Burundi ACORD Burundi, CAPAD (Confederation of Associations of Agricultural Producers for Development) and Inades-Formation Burundi; ACORD in Rwanda Rwanda; DRC by UWAKI North Kivu, in the regional coordination Inades-Formation Burundi. In the Sahel zone, it is implemented by AOPP (Association of Professional Peasant Organizations) and NKR (Horticultural Regional Network Kayes) in Mali, Viim Baoré UBTEC and Burkina (Union of Baoré Tradition Savings Credit / Naam) and federations and Mooriben FCMN-Niya Niger. THE regional coordination is ensured by the IRPAD (Institute for the Promotion of Alternative Development) in Mali.

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A view of the participants