IITA News

Picture of IITA/SARD-SC cassava processing center building at ZARI-Mansa.

IITA looks to spur cassava sector growth in Zambia as it hands over processing center to national partner

IITA, through its “Support to Agricultural Research for Development of Strategic Crops in Africa” (SARD-SC) project funded by the African Development Bank (AfDB), turned over a modern cassava processing center to its national partner, the Zambia Agriculture Research Institute (ZARI), on 12 April in Mansa, Luapula Province, some 800 km north of the capital Lusaka.

SARD-SC project stimulates rural economy through establishment of cassava community processing centers in DR Congo

The cassava community processing centers (CCPCs) are currently stimulating the economy and creating employment for the rural population of Kavumu village, in the Kabare territory of South-Kivu Province of the DR Congo. Until the introduction of the CCPC in early 2015, there was a high level of unemployment in Kavumu community.

Picture of The Zambia IITA Youth Agripreneurs (ZIYA) Program successfully conducted a training course on cassava value addition for 11 ZIYA members―all female―on 6–16 March at the IITA Southern Africa Research and Administration Hub (SARAH) campus in Kabangwe, Lusaka Province. The 11 women came from different youth groups from Kaoma District in Western Province, Monze District in Southern Province, and Serenje and Mkushi districts in Central Province partnering under the ZIYA umbrella. T he training course was conducted with support from the Support to Agricultural Research for Development of Strategic Crops in Africa (SARD-SC) project. Facilitators included Emmanuel Alamu, Food Scientist; Prisca Chileshe, Postharvest Utilization Research Assistant; Nhamo Nhamo, ZIYA Youth Coordinator; and Jeremiah Hantolo, Zambia SARD-SC Maize Coordinator, all based at IITA-SARAH. The 10-day, hands-on course covered the various steps in preparing cassava-based food products―from root preparation (cleaning, peeling, chipping, and drying) to processing and cooking/ baking. Specifically, the youth were taught how to make confectionary products such as biscuits, chin-chin, fritters, titbits, and cupcakes. At the end of the training, the trainees presented the different food products that they had produced to IITA-Zambia staff as well as to Hilde Koper-Limbourg, Deputy Director General for Corporate Services, who coincidentally was also in Zambia on a familiarization and monitoring trip to the southern Africa Hub. “These are very impressive products that you have prepared,” David Chikoye, IITA Southern Africa Regional Director, said during the presentation by the trainees. “I sincerely hope that you will apply what you’ve learned here―and what you will still learn in the future from ZIYA―in your respective groups when you go back,” he added. “These are really delicious,” added Koper-Limbourg. “I see a really good business opportunity for these products, and a great business venture for the ZIYA youth. You should be proud of yourselves and what you have accomplished here.” Asked what they will do with the knowledge that they gained from this training, Caroline Liwena, ZIYA Youth Chair, who also participated in the course, related that they would also train other members of their respective youth groups. “Apart from echo training, we will also start some small businesses producing and selling these food products. And, of course, start making money,” she proudly added.

Zambia IITA Agripreneurs Program train 11 youth on cassava-based food production

The Zambia IITA Youth Agripreneurs (ZIYA) Program successfully conducted a training course on cassava value addition for 11 ZIYA members―all female―on 6–16 March at the IITA Southern Africa Research and Administration Hub (SARAH) campus in Kabangwe, Lusaka Province.

Picture of Mala Kachalla (center) is one of the wheat scientists sponsored by the SARD-SC wheat project.

Two wheat scientists graduate with full scholarships from the SARD-SC Wheat project

In August and September 2016, two students, Mala Kachalla from Nigeria and Bruce Mutari from Zimbabwe, respectively graduated with a master’s degree after successful studies funded by the SARD-SC wheat project. The AfDB-funded SARD-SC wheat component of ICARDA runs a scholarship program to build the capacity of African researchers in various segments of the wheat sector.

Picture of cassava processing machinary

FMS refurbishes cassava processing centers and trains machine fabricators in DR Congo to reinforce its cassava value chain

IITA’s cassava processing center in Kalambo, DR Congo, now wears an improved look, thanks to the intervention by members of the IITA Facility Management Services (FMS).

Picture of Sabina Nyahuye - female wheat farmer.

SARD-SC beneficiary declared best female wheat farmer in Zimbabwe

When Sabina Nyahuye, a wheat farmer from the Hwedza Innovation Platform of the SARD-SC Wheat project, started wheat farming 20 years ago, she says wheat harvests and the market were just okay.

Picture of The regional commissioner (wearing cream colored pants) visiting project partners in Tanzania.

Kigoma Regional Commissioner applauds SARD-SC project for improved cassava productivity

The newly appointed executives of Tanzanian Kigoma region, Brigadier General Emmanuel Maganga and Charles Pallangyo, visited one of the SARD-SC project sites in the Kibondo. About 105 officials from five districts of Kigoma Region were on the entourage of the executives who visited the Kibondo Big Power Group—a cassava farmers and processors’ group involved in…

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Maize value chain holds gender mainstreaming workshop for partners in Nigeria

A three-day workshop on gender mainstreaming in the SARD-SC maize value chain was conducted at the Kaduna State Agricultural Development Project (KADP) Headquarters, Kaduna, Nigeria, during the last quarter of 2016 with key stakeholders in attendance. The workshop aimed to enhance gender-sensitive technology development and dissemination to boost productivity and income of a broad segment of targeted…

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Picture of Lafia Innovation Platfrom members working on the GEM technology parboiler.

Installation of GEM rice parboiling technology improves local rice production and business in the Lafia IP

The SARD-SC rice commodity value chain, executed by AfricaRice, in collaboration with National Cereals Research Institute, has installed energy efficient GEM rice parboiling technologies and innovations in the Lafia Innovation Platform, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. In addition, a total of 1,215 rice parboilers, including 915 women and 300 men, were trained on processing and value addition…

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Picture of Veronica (right) assessing cassava in the field of one of the farmers involved in the study.

Smart farming of cassava with focus on integrated soil fertility management increases yield by 60% in Tanzania

Preliminary results from an ongoing study by IITA in Tanzania have shown an increase of nearly 60% in cassava yield which translates to a 30% increase in income for farmers. The study “Integrated soil fertility management (ISFM) for productive and sustainable cassava production systems in Tanzania” is being conducted in the major cassava-growing areas of…

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