Potato Value Chain Development in West Africa

Country: Guinea
Project details
Services:
Access to finance
Capacity building
Market assessment
Value chain development
Crops:
Roots and tubers
Households reached:
1525

Countries: Guinea and Senegal

Project length: 2007-2012

 

Goal: The main objective of this project is to develop a more competitive potato sector in West Africa, particularly in Guinea and Senegal, and to increase income at the producer, dealer and processor level. It is believed that a more competitive potato sector will have a positive impact on food security and the fight against poverty.

 

Project description:

The Senegal component was initiated in the second year of the overall project. An important parameter of the potato sector in Senegal is that the Agriculture Ministry is presently implementing a food security program at the national level, which includes 50% subsidies for potato seeds, in order to support that sub-sector. Coordination with that program is key to the success of the CFC-sponsored potato sector. A loan to farmers allowed the purchase and shipment to Senegal of 20 tons of seeds for Arnova, Ditta and Konsul potato varieties. Those varieties are known to perform well in the local environment. The seeds were purchased for the cold off-season (November 2008 - February 2009). Potatoes are growing to the entire satisfaction of producers participating in the project.

 

Activities:

 

Component I : Increase Production and Productivity in Project Areas

  • To introduce technical packages for sustainable production of potatoes for consumption
  • To introduce new sustainable technologies for post harvest, storage and product preservation of potatoes
  • To facilitate access by producers to inputs, credit and markets

Component II : Develop and Strengthen the Potato Seed Sector

  • To introduce new sustainable technologies for seed propagation
  • To adapt drip-irrigation techniques to potato seed production
  • To support the emergence of producers and/or propagators able to meet the supply needs
  • To facilitate access to credit

Component III : Develop the Capacity of Producer Associations

  • To identify staff training needs for the producer associations
  • To conduct gender sensitivity training
  • To implement a target training plan

Component IV : Develop the Market for Seed Potatoes and Consumption Potatoes

  • Identify preferred varieties for alternative household preparations (boiled; fried; French fried, chips)
  • Develop a marketing strategy for alternative uses of potato uses
  • Facilitate export of consumption potatoes to surrounding countries
  • Facilitating exports of “class A” seed potatoes to Senegal

Component V: Implement an Institutional Framework to Support the Sector

  • To form National Steering Committees in Guinea and Senegal
  • To conducts workshops and disseminate relevant reports in order to develop information exchange and support mechanisms at the national level among stakeholders such as producers, traders, scientists, extension agents, and ministry officials.
  • To leverage additional institutional support to stakeholders

 

Accomplishments:

  • Substantial decrease of potato losses during storage due to improved conservation techniques and preventive treatments (5 to 10% losses in 2009, as compared to 50% upward before the project);
  • Major yield increases (over 50%) for potato varieties introduced by the project and increased amounts of potatoes marketed locally; Arnova, Konsul and Ditta varieties were widely adopted; yields ranging from 28 to 37 tons/ha were recorded;
  • Following organized field visits, increasing expression of interest by local potato producers (men and women) for purchasing potato seeds produced by project seed multipliers (rather than purchase of imports) ;
  • Participants of local field visits included 1525 producers, including 1200 women. In addition to direct plant growth observations, the visits led to several adaptations of the cultural techniques and post-harvest practices.

 

Total project budget: USD 3,584,026

Funders: Common Fund for Commodities