1- Agadi Pilot Farm
2- Program for Zero-Tillage
Technology Transfer to Farmers
1- Agadi Pilot Farm
The Arab Authority for Agricultural Investment and Development (AAAID) has adopted a program for developing rain-fed agriculture in Sudan and modernizing it by applying Zero-Tillage cultivation system which is applied in advanced countries, such as the U.S. The system applies integrated technology packages and mechanization.
To implement the above mentioned program, AAAID has established a pilot farm in Agadi, Blue Nile , Sudan . The pilot farm, which is owned by the Arab Sudanese Blue Nile Agricultural Company (one of AAAID affiliated companies), has achieved substantial success since the year 2001.
Large-scale experiments have been implemented in the pilot farm project for comparing different levels of tillage. The Zero-Tillage, or No plowing, cultivation system out-performed all other systems, and achieved dramatic increases in productivity and quality over the other systems. For instance, the yield of sorghum has jumped from 250 Kg/feddan to 1200 Kg/feddan, and the yield of sunflower jumped from 150 Kg/feddan to 600 Kg/feddan
( 4200 meters ). This is in addition to the rise in quality. Therefore, the zero-tillage system has been adopted as the cultivation system in the farm.
The zero-tillage system, when mulch debris is kept on the land, helps increasing moisture content in the soil. It also helps minimizing soil erosion. Integrated technology packages and mechanization are integral parts of the zero-tillage system applied in Agadi. This large-scale pilot farm is intended to stand as a model for the development of rain-fed agriculture in Arab countries and the region, and for the development of projects of direct impact towards food security. It is worth mentioning that AAAID organized a field day in Agadi pilot farm in October 2002 to introduce the results of this large-scale pilot farm. The field day was attended by key personalities in the area of rainfed agriculture in the Arab region. For more details on Agadi experiment of Zero-tillage
click here .
2- Program for
Zero-Tillage Technology Transfer to
In recognition of the fact that the challenge facing the future of agriculture in developing countries, specially under globalization of economic activity, and that the goal of decreasing the food gap in the Arab region requires collaborative effort of all related parties, and based on its strategy for the years 2002 – 2012, AAAID has adopted new programs geared to help raising agricultural productivity and thus comparative and competitive advantage of food agricultural products in the Arab region. In this regard, AAAID's programs include introducing modern cultivation systems, the application of integrated technology packages which are appropriate for local conditions. They also include the program for the experimentation and selection of appropriate modern irrigation systems, the program for experimental application of appropriate agricultural mechanization in agricultural projects. This is in addition to other programs. In this regard, AAAID establishes pilot projects to be followed by other investors. Those projects are planned and implemented to high standards and to ensure sustainability of agricultural development and preserving environmental resource base.
Towards the goal of effective contribution in fighting hunger and for boosting the role of the rain-fed agricultural sector, where about 75% of the agricultural labor force in the Arab region work and produce about 80% of agricultural output:
- Implementation of the program for Zero-Tillage farming technology transfer to traditional farmers was started in Season 2003 in Agadi area, in the Blue Nile State in Sudan, following the phenomenal success of the zero-tillage farming system in the pilot farm in Agadi.
- The program is targeted to raise crop productivity, enhance the incomes of rural farmers, improve farm management, and, achieve sustainable agricultural development.
- Traditional farmers were divided into 2 groups: small farms group, and wide farms group. Two modern integrated technology packages were implemented, one mechanized and one manual.
- Under the new system, the average sorghum yield jumped to 1200 kg/feddan, compared to 200 kg/feddan in the traditional system. This has encouraged farmers to join the new system and about 1000 farmers in Agadi area applied to join.
- Preparations are made for implementing the system in Ghadarif state (in Sudan) based on the request of the state government. It is worth mention that Ghadarif state is one of the largest states in the rain-fed mechanized farming sector in Sudan.
- Steps are under way for preparing a technical and economic feasibility study for establishing an agricultural service company, in partnership with AAAID, to provide necessary farming machinery and inputs to farmers.
There are activities for spreading this technology to other Arab Countries.
For more information on the program click here