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The National Platform of Action for Family Farming in Côte d’Ivoire (PANAFCI) organized, from March 25 to May 10, 2019, two information and awareness raising tours for family farmers and CSOs on the scope and implications of major policies, laws and programs for the development of the agricultural sector and the implications.

A total of 459 farmers and civil society organizations participated in information and awareness-raising workshops on the scope and implications of major agricultural sector development policies, laws and programs in Côte d’Ivoire.

These workshops, initiated by PANAFCI, aimed to increase family farmers’ knowledge of the different various legal and regulatory systems that govern their field of activity and thus contribute toa better participation on their part in the formulation and implementation of these systems.

Indeed, the Ivorian agricultural sector is governed by a set of legal and institutional mechanisms designed to ensure its development. Thus in 2015, an Agricultural Orientation Law aimed at organizing the country’s agricultural policy was adopted. However, these mechanisms are little or not known to the main actors in the agricultural world made up of family farmers who live in rural areas.

These men, women and families, farmers and family farmers, are the basis of nutrition in both villages and cities, even though they are ironically the most deprived of the economic system and seem to have no possibility of recourse.

This situation challenges PANAFCI, one of whose objectives is to build the foundations and spaces for dialogue between public authorities and family farmers on the one hand and between the latter and the various development actors at the national and international levels on the other.

Abengourou workshop

The tours took place on March 25, 27 and 29 for the first phase, in the cities of Daloa/Haut-Sassandra region; Bouaké/Gbêkê region and Abengourou/ Indénié-Djuablin region; and for the second phase on May 06, 08 and 10 in the cities of Bondoukou/Gontougo region, Yamoussoukro/District of Yamoussoukro and Gagnoa/Gôh region.

In addition to members of the host regions’ platforms, each workshop brought together representatives of producer and civil society organizations from neighbouring regional platforms.

Thus, the Daloa workshop welcomed representatives from the Cavally, Gôh, Marahoué and Lôh-Djiboua regions; the Gbêkê region welcomed participants from the Poro regions, Tchologo, Aries/Yamoussoukro District and the Indénié-Djuablin region included representatives from the Mé, Gontougo, Moronou and Nzi regions.

The Bondoukou workshop welcomed the delegations of Mé, Moronou, Indénié-Djuablin and Sud Comoé; the Yamoussoukro workshop welcomed the delegations of Poro, Tchologo, Gbêkê and N’Zi; and finally, the Gagnoa workshop brought together the delegations of Cavally, Sud-Comoé, Marahoué and Loh-Djiboua.

Daloa Workshop

The workshops also recorded the participation of administrative authorities and technical structures.

During the first phase of the tour, the main facilitator, Mr. ASSOKO Maillet, Advocacy Officer at the GS of Inades-Formation, spoke to the participants about the National Development Plan (2016-2020 NDP), the second about the Agricultural Orientation Law of Côte d’Ivoire and the third about the National Agricultural Investment Programme (NIPA 2, 2017-2025).

The second phase focused on the revised National Strategy for the Development of the Rice Sector in Côte d’Ivoire (SNDR) 2012-2020; the National Strategy for the Development of Non-Rice Food Crops (SNDCV, 2014-2020); the Strategic Plan for the Development of Livestock, Fisheries and Aquaculture in Côte d’Ivoire (PSDEPA, 2014-2020).

The workshops enabled participants to familiarize themselves with and understand the contexts in which the various legal and regulatory instruments governing agriculture were drafted, the objectives of these instruments, the measures taken to implement them, the status of program implementation and the obstacles to implementation.

After each presentation, participants discussed the texts in relation to their reality and proposed measures to improve and better implement agricultural laws, policies and programs.

PANAFCI member organizations are committed to participating in agricultural development at the local, regional and national levels.

There a was general agreement that the workshops were very rewarding for all. Administrative authorities and representatives of technical structures participating for the first time in a PANAFCI activity welcomed the initiative to which they were pleased to have contributed.

Gallery Photos of the tour

Inades-Formation Togo in its commitment to promote food sovereignty took part from April 11 to 13, 2019 in the National Forum of Togolese Farmers (FNPT). This is a meeting of business opportunities that allowed its agricultural partners (actors of the food sovereignty project) to exhibit their products, enrich their address book and forge new partnerships.

Well packaged and labelled fonio, packaged fonio flour, common bean, fonio and bean seeds, food brochures, Inades-Formation booklets on agriculture, livestock, business management: these are some of the articles from this national forum on the Inades-Formation Togo stand. For this 11th edition, the reflections revolved around the theme: “agricultural processing poles to enhance the potential in Togo: a new vision translated by the NDP”. This is an opportunity for the actors of the food sovereignty project to highlight the products of their harvest.

Clearly, visitors were amazed and satisfied with the beauty of the product: “without a doubt, the quality is there. It’s my first time seeing the fonio so nicely wrapped up. It is already building my appetite,” said one of the Aklesso visitors. Even the elected representative of the people, the Honorable Abass KABOUA, came to the Inades-Formation Togo stand. He congratulated private organizations for their contribution to development and their commitment to promoting local products. He appreciated the packaging of the fonio ”Ovali” and promised to promote it as much as possible.

Public debates and conferences focused on various themes at this give and take meeting. Panels from several sectors were run, including one on the fonio sector, to which the Inades-Formation Togo delegation composed of seed companies, producers and processors strongly contributed for the improvement of this sector.

Panel on the fonio sector

This forum allowed Inades-Formation Togo to capitalize on some achievements: a Whatsapp platform was created. It brings together national stakeholders in the sector. The delegation entered into negotiations with other operators with a view to developing a possible business relationship. The agricultural partners also discussed with delegates from the MIFA (agricultural financing incentive mechanism) on the modalities of collaboration.

The Forum aims to strengthen the development dynamics of agricultural processing poles through the organization, structuring and financing of agricultural value chains in order to effectively contribute to the achievement of the objectives of the National Development Program (NDP). More than six hundred (600) actors from the agricultural world from Togo and elsewhere took part in this meeting.

The meeting was opened by the Minister of Agriculture, Noël Koutéra BATAKA. In his speech, he recalled the government’s actions aimed at making Togolese agriculture competitive, resilient and income-generating, as outlined in the National Development Plan (2018-2022 NDP). He also congratulated and encouraged non-governmental organizations and private structures for supporting grassroots communities for a developed, prosperous and influential rural world.

The Honorable Abass KABOUA inviting visitors to local consumption

Friday, April 13, 2018, it was just 1:00 pm, when, in front of a crowd of customers, sitting around the tables in the restaurant “Chez Alice” located in Marcory in Abidjan, Mrs. Pauline Epélékou, Director of Inades-Formation Côte d’Ivoire took the floor.

She announced to those who were there for lunch that two new dishes were added to the daily menu: fonio couscous with chicken Yassa and Fonio au Gras.

It was actually a free fonio tasting session, organized by Inades-Formation Côte d’Ivoire to promote this ancestral African cereal.

                                                                     Fonio grains

For the record, fonio has long been cultivated by the people of northern Côte d’Ivoire, where ecological conditions are favourable to its growth and development. For centuries, the consumption of this cereal has been an integral part of the dietary habits of these populations who master its production and cooking techniques. Fonio is also consumed in other African countries, including neighbouring countries in northern Côte d’Ivoire.

Because of the difficult nature of its processing, the consumption of fonio is unknown to a large segment of the Ivorian population, particularly urban dwellers who have become accustomed to the consumption of other cereals such as rice, maize and millet.

Yet fonio is a cereal with many virtues, rich in mineral salts and amino acids. Resistant to climatic hazards, it can easily replace rice and thus limit massive imports. Fonio is classified by Inades-Formation as a sovereignty food and is part of the foodstuffs it promotes through its Sovereignty Food Enhancement Project.

                                            Tasters in front of their fonio with Yassa dish

Giving People the Opportunity to Know Fonio

The objective of the tasting session was to offer the public the opportunity to discover or rediscover the flavours of fonio and get them to include it in their menu.

Moreover, the fact that the tasting took place in a restaurant was not accidental. This choice was intended to attract restaurant owners so that by seeing the interest customers could have in fonio dishes, they could consider putting it on their menu card.

In addition to customers of the restaurant who agreed to taste the dishes, other people from state institutions related to agriculture and food as well as local partners, invited by Inades-Formation, took part in the tasting.

Fonio is Digestible and Delicious in the Opinion of the Guests

The guests carried the first spoonful of fonio dish to their lips, with slight gestures of hesitation for some and confidence for others.

After the first bite, the faces lit up immediately most of the time, pleasantly surprised by the good taste of the fonio. The appreciation did not take long to come. In their great majority, the tasters judged the fonio dish delicious and digestible.

They said they are ready to consume fonio regularly if it is available and accessible on the market.