Integrated Farming III in Zambia
Project Implementer: Mendel University in Brno
Donor: Czech Development Cooperation
Implementation period: 2022 - 2024
Western Province is Zambia's poorest province due to its difficult geographical and climatic conditions, as well as the lingering effects of long-standing policies of disadvantage and economic isolation. A significant majority of the population in Western Province is made up of small-scale farmers, for whom agriculture is often the only source of livelihood.
The local population relies on subsistence farming for their livelihoods, which produces only a very limited surplus for sale. This leads to insufficient and unstable income The population thus has limited capital for business development and in turn is dependent on external assistance (government or donor). The low standard of living of the population contributes to child malnutrition, limited school attendance and access to basic health care.
Agriculture in the Western Province is traditional, extensive, inefficient, long-term unsustainable in terms of income and has a negative impact on the environment. Crop production is poorly diversified and livestock production is highly extensive. Currently, the Zambian government is trying to encourage fish farming by building ponds, fish farms and fish ponds.
PROJECT AIM AND DEVELOPMENT ASPECTS
The main objective of the project is to increase the efficiency of sustainable agricultural production, processing and commercialisation. The proposed measures also aim to strengthen the stability and biodiversity of the degraded landscape, reduce erosion and contribute to a better water balance in the area of interest.
The project intends to contribute to improving the livelihoods of small and medium farmers in the Western Province of Zambia in the districts of Limulunga, Nalolo, Mongu and Senanga. This will be done by increasing the average income of farmers from agricultural production and increasing the participation of women and youth farmers in independent farming activities or community groups.
ROLE OF HOLISTIC SOLUTIONS S.R.O. IN THE PROJECT
HS team is mainly involved in the technical modifications of existing ponds built under the previous Integrated Farming II project and the technical designs of new production and reproduction ponds. HS also trains trainers in pond establishment, maintenance and operation and provides technical consultation throughout the project.
HS also provided business and marketing training to the trainers, which then led to the farmers applying for grants through their business plans. HS team also developed the selection criteria so that the evaluation committee evaluated these business plans in a consistent and fair manner. HS is also engaged in evaluating the effectiveness of these grants given out.
Finally, HS is analyzing selected value chains to make them more efficient and to help increase sales of farmers' products in local markets. To support the marketing of farmers' produce, it also engages in local promotion and looks for market channels that would be most appropriate and profitable for farmers.