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AAPI NEWS BULLETIN Accelerating Agriculture Productivity Improvement (AAPI) Volume

A project supported by USAID in collaboration with DAE Notes from Chief of Party, AAPI

Inside this issue:

Community-Based Approach Making AWD Technology Feasible with Fertilizer Deep Placement

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The First Model Village of AAPI

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AAPI Events in June 2014

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AAPI News Bulletin is a monthly publication of the AAPI project. Subscriptions are free. International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC) is a Public International Organization (PIO) based in Alabama, USA. IFDC focuses on increasing and sustaining agricultural productivity in developing countries. Managing Editor: Ishrat Jahan Resident Representative IFDC Bangladesh Eurasia Division and PC & COP, AAPI Design and Layout: Syed Afzal Hossain Data Management Unit, AAPI

I have been working with AAPI since its inception as the project coordinator (PC). In April 2014, I joined AAPI as the chief of party (COP) in addition to my job as PC. I am excited to work as the COP with the AAPI team and all stakeholders working with AAPI. This month we saw the Boro crop cut in full swing. Like the farmers, we are juggling this month, transplanting one crop (A us) and harvesting another crop (Boro). In addition, we are also engaged in conducting and analyzing data for several surveys such as a census of fertilizer briquette producers, a household survey of Aman 2013, a census of sample villages, a block survey and a crop cut of Boro 2014. Our headquarters scientist and biometrician Dr. Joaquin Sanabria is assisting us in the household surveys. We have not noticed any major problem with the Boro crop and are expecting a good crop this year. However, lack of rain in some places is causing problems for farmers in raising seed beds for the Aus rice, which is dependent mainly on rain. In this issue our agriculture specialist Mr. Md. Fozlul Hoque has written an article on how a community-based approach is making alternate wetting and drying (AWD) technology feasible with fertilizer deep placement (FDP) technology. Our gender

May 31, 2014

specialist Rubina Islam has shown how an AAPI model village is creating a strong presence of the FDP technology in the village’s farming system. Rubina focuses on AAPI’s first model village, Bakshi, established in 2012. Ishrat Jahan *** Community-Based Approach Making AWD Technology Feasible with Fertilizer Deep Placement The major focus of IFDC’s AAPI project is the promotion of FDP technology for rice and vegetable crops. However, AAPI is also promoting the AWD irrigation technology as a beneficial and crosscutting technology for rice farmers. The traditional flood irrigation system of rice cultivation is water- and energy - intensive. Conversely, AWD saves scarce water resources and energy and in the end reduces the crop production cost. Boro rice contributes most to the total rice production of the country, and the higher Boro rice productivity has helped the country to meet its food requirement. However, Boro rice is an irrigated crop. Therefore, expansion of the Boro area also means expansion of excess use of water resources. Seventy -seven (77) percent of the country’s total irrigation is sourced from ground water. Rice scientists have found that high rice productivity with AWD

The views expressed in this bulletin do not necessarily reflect views of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) or the United States Government


AAPI NEWS BULLETIN AAPI News Bulletin Contact Persons: Ishrat Jahan Address: Dhaka Office: Road No. 62, House No. 4B, Apt-B2 Gulshan - 2, Dhaka -1212 Bangladesh Tel: 880-2-9894288 880-2-8817391 Fax: 880-2-8826109 Website: www.aapi-ifdc.org www.ifdc.org Barisal Office: “Zohora” 834 (New) Police Line Road, Barisal Tel: 0431-2176566 Jessore Office: Jagorani Chakra Foundation (JCF) Building 46 Mujib Sarak Jessore 7400 Tel: 0421-60986

Volume irrigation can be maintained with 2530 percent less water use. This will facilitate bringing new unirrigated areas under irrigation with the saved water, while the country increases rice production through more Boro cultivation. AAPI is promoting AWD technology through field demonstrations on rice grown with Guti urea (a local term for urea deep placement [UDP]) and irrigated with AWD technology. The farmers’ briefing sessions are held at the beginning of the season to make aware not only the demonstration farmer, but also the neighboring farmers of the demonstration area. The field day programs are held to show the better performing rice plots with high yields and lower production costs resulting from less use of urea and conserved irrigation water.

AAPI Management: Ishrat Jahan, Project Coordinator and Chief of Party; Yam Kanta Gaihre, Post Doc Scientist; Md. Mofizul Islam, Sr. Agriculture Specialist; Dr. Shaharuk Ahmed, Md. Fozlul Haque, Md. Iqbal Hoque, Agriculture Specialists; Dr. Badirul Islam, Farming System Specialist; Abul Hossain Mollah, Dr. AKM Farhad Training Specialists; Dr. Md. Abdul Mazid Mia, Mainul Ahsan, Soil Scientists; Md. Abdus Satter, Local Environment Specialist; Md. Nurul Islam, Market/Business Development Specialist; Ram Proshad Ghosh, Mechanical Engineer; Dr. Abdul Wohab, Agriculture Engineer; M. Hemayetul Islam, Sr. Chemical Engineer; Sonia Kutubuddin, Activity Coordinator; Rubina Islam, Gender Specialist; Syed Afzal Mahmood Hossain, Senior Data Management Specialist; AFM Saleh Chowdhury, Chief Accountant; Bishnu Rup Chowdhury, Administrative and Procurement Officer

Generally rice farmers pay a prefixed rate for irrigation at the end of the season and not on quantity of water used. Therefore, the farmers who adopted the AWD technology could not visualize their cost savings, and the benefits of AWD irrigation went to the irrigation owner instead of the farmer. This Boro 2014 season, in addition to establishing the individual AWD demonstrations plots, the project took a different approach to work with the community farmers in collaboration with Bangladesh

approach, a large area in Mollickpur at Jhikorgacha of Jessore district was brought under the AWD system. Under the BADC-owned deep tube well (DTW) command area, the farmers pay for the water they use. Seventy-five (75) farmers of the entire 20 hectares (ha) of land under the scheme were motivated to adopt 2

the AWD technology for Boro rice. For a comprehensive understanding on the use of UDP technology with AWD, the concerned farmers were given training on both technologies. About 600 kilograms (kg) of good quality modern variety foundation seed of Boro rice was collected from BADC with the assistance of the DAE deputy director in Jessore and was sold to the farmers within the command area of the BADC-owned DTW. AAPI supplied the AWD pipes to the plot owners. AWD pipes are necessary for observing the water level in the plots and to regulate water use. The farmers are advised to follow the AWD irrigation guidelines. AAPI and DAE field staff also visit the plots for regular monitoring. The BADC staff will provide necessary support in the final measurement of the irrigation water used in the AWD system compared with the previous flooded irrigation system.

AAPI ex-COP inspecting an AWD plot at Jhikorgacha, Jessore

The objectives of the AWD block irrigation are to: 

Demonstrate AWD technology adoption by a large group of farmers and successfully promote the technology.



Demonstrate satisfactory rice yields from UDP and AWD technology and make evident less/ optimum irrigation use and cost.


AAPI NEWS BULLETIN

Volume The model village concept approach increases women’s involvement through homestead vegetable cultivation as well as active field participation in other crops to increase family income and nutrition in the model villages established by the AAPI project.

There is savings in cultivation cost and an increase in farmers’ income. 

Demonstrate the importance and the methods of saving scarce water resources, minimizing water use, conserving natural resources and reducing environmental degradation.

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Inform the farmers and irrigation scheme owners about the prospect of bringing new areas under irrigation with the saved water and to contribute to national rice production and food security.

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Bakshi — The First AAPI Model Village Bakshi, a village located in Nazirpur upazila of Pirojpur district, was selected as the first model village of AAPI. There are 14 landless and 230 farming families in the village; women make up 47 percent of the population. Before AAPI started its activities, only the men of the village were involved in the field-level crop production activities. Women’s activities were limited only to traditional homestead vegetable production, crop post-harvests, seed preservation and livestock rearing. The Bakshi farmers used to cultivate transplanted (T) A us rice on about 12 ha, local Aman rice on around 57 ha, T Aman high-yield variety (HYV) rice on about 20 ha and Boro rice on about eight (8) ha of cultivable land. Sunflower cultivation used to dominate Bakshi’s oilseed area, covering about 6-12 ha of land – followed by maize in around 6-8 ha of land. Potato used to be grown on 2-3 ha of land. A number of other crops, including cabbage, cauliflower, knolkhol, tomato, radish, lalshak (red amaranth), cucumber, mustard, mungbean and grass pea, covered 7-9 ha of Bakshi’s vegetable fields. UDP technology was used only on a negligible Boro rice area (only 100 decimals, or 0.4 ha) when the AAPI model village concept was introduced in Bakshi. The surplus farm produce used to be sold by individual farmers in the village market at a comparatively lower price. The women farmers were not involved in commercial vegetable production or sale. Family vegetable consumption was limited due to low yield of crops grown in traditional methods.

Establish and exemplify successful linkages and coordination between AAPI, DAE, BADC and private partners (the farmers).

A successful AWD block irrigation pilot program of AAPI may lead to future IFDC projects to implement this model for agricultural technology dissemination. *** The First Model Village of AAPI The AAPI project first initiated the model village activity during the Boro 2012 season with an aim to create a strong presence of the FDP technology in the farming system of a village. AAPI identified 12 villages to prepare as model villages with an objective to: 

Establish gender equity whereby the access to resources and benefits are shared fairly and impartially across the village population;

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Achieve maximum adoption of FDP within all crops;

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Define cropping patterns, using FDP, that will sustain agriculture production with optimal economic return;

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Lift agriculture production systems beyond subsistence;

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Connect farmers to markets; and

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Create market awareness among farmers so that they can participate profitably in the value chain (ensure their agriculture production matches market demands and can be traded fairly).

Model Village Activities Four crop pattern demonstration plots cultivating rice (72), vegetables (48) and homestead (small garden) vegetables (24) have been established in the Bakshi model village since A us 2012. Half of the pattern-based rice and vegetable demonstrations were established by the male farmers trained by AAPI. The remaining half of the rice and vegetable demonstrations and all of 3


AAPI NEWS BULLETIN

Volume

homestead gardens were established by the female farmers trained by AAPI. The village demonstrations promoted UDP use in a number of varieties of vegetables of the Bakshi crop pattern in addition to rice: maize, cauliflower, cabbage, knolkhol, potato, sunflower, bitter gourd, okra, eggplant and sweet gourd. A fertilizer briquette machine shop was established in the model village to ensure and ease the supply of UDP as needed for Bakshi and the neighboring villages.

The trained women farmers’ activity in the homestead gardens and in the field demonstration plots had a significant impact on their knowledge and confidence and encouraged them to grow vegetables on a commercial basis. The women of the landless families now work as day laborers. The women of the marginal and small farms also take active participation in the fields of various crops. The women vegetable growers now have some surplus for commercial sale, and this increases the women’s income. The women laborers of the Bakshi village now provide services to their neighboring villages as hired labor for FDP application. The women of Bakshi village are playing important roles in the family decision making as a result of their economic empowerment. The increased yields of different crops have improved the food security and positively impacted the livelihood conditions of the residents of the Bakshi village. ***

Crop pattern based maize demonstration established by women farmers of Bakshi

AAPI Events in June 2014 In the month of June 2014, AAPI is concentrating its activities for A us paddy 2014. In this month, the following activities will be carried out.

Bakshi Turning into an Effective AAPI Model Village The pattern-based technology promotion in the Bakshi model village successfully motivated the farmers, and currently more than 80 percent of the Boro, T. Aman and T. Aus rice area is under UDP technology in Bakshi village. The Bakshi maize area increased to about 24 ha, and the potato area increased to more than 10 ha, both of which are now grown with UDP. More than 90 percent of other vegetables are cultivated with UDP. Now farmers grow HYV potato following the AAPIinitiated linkage with BADC seed sale center at Pirojpur Sadar. The yields of all crops increased on average by 15-30 percent per unit of land. The cropping intensity is now 275 percent (up from the 250 percent in 2012). The village surplus crop production is now significantly large. The Bakshi crop producers now get better prices when negotiating for the large group sale of the crops in the upazila market. Family consumption of nutritious vegetables increased by 25-30 percent, and the income of farmers increased by 20-25 percent annually.

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75 farmers’ training on rice 2 batches of briquette producers’ training 2 batches of small business management training 2 batches of local mechanic training in repair and maintenance 24 rice field demonstration establish 13 rice field trial establish Facilitating 19 briquette machine sale 943 motivational meetings with old farmers

AAPI-Walmart   

1 stakeholders’ workshop 1 motivational meetings with trained farmers Continue facilitating sale of fertilizer briquette machine

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Aapi bulletin vol 39 may2014(eng)  
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