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Making Southern African cereal and livestock farming climate resilient

  • Southern Africa

CTA’s flagship project in Southern Africa seeks to promote the scaling up of four specific proven climate-resistant solutions for cereal and livestock farmers: drought-tolerant seeds, improved climate information services, diversified options for livestock farmers, and innovative weather-based insurance for crops and livestock.

EN Southern Africa table okWhy are we doing this?

The project focuses on a challenge that has critical importance for Southern Africa now and in the future. Climate change is affecting all sectors of the economy in the region, but especially agriculture. Most farming in Southern Africa is rain fed, so changing weather patterns are having an immediate impact on its productivity. Farmers do not have good access to existing climate-smart solutions that could help them adapt and plan for the future.

What are we going to do?

This project focuses on advocating four specific, proven climate-resistant solutions for cereal and livestock farmers. These are:
• Stress-tolerant seeds
• Improved climate information services
• Different options for livestock farmers
• Innovative weather-based insurance for crops and livestock.

Strategic partnerships underpin the effectiveness of the project. CTA will work with SACAU on activities related to farmers, while incorporating the technical climate-smart solutions proven by CCAFS, CCARDESA and FAO. Keeping the many stakeholders informed and involved will be done in partnership with SADC/FANR. ILRI and Heifer International will be the primary partner for the livestock component, and aWhere and mobile phone companies will be engaged for the information technology elements of the project. GENESIS and banks are the project's lead partners for engaging with the business, private-sector and finance communities.

Implementing organisations

Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions (SACAU)
Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA
Zimbabwe Farmers Union 
Econet Wireless  
Zambia Open University 
Musika Development Initiatives 
Professional Insurance Corporation of Zambia (PICZ
National Smallholder Farmers Association of Malawi (NASFAM)

Other key stakeholders Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock – Zambia 
Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services (DCCMS) – Malawi 
Seed Co. Limited 

What are we expecting?

The project will increase awareness of proven technologies and techniques that farmers can use immediately to adapt to climate change and will increase the capacity of farmers and networks to adopt climate-resilient ways of working. ICTs will help extension and advisory services to increase the adoption of the four proven solutions. Increased access to information about climate-resilient solutions will contribute to the development of informed policies and incentives will that facilitate access to and use of the outputs at the national and regional level, as well as successful private-sector engagement of agribusinesses. Key stakeholders will also be better equipped to engage in national and regional policy processes and to support the promotion of climate-resilient solutions. Efforts will be made to forge new partnerships with other organisations in the region. The project is expected to encourage business model approach to scale up climate solutions and trigger private sector investment and engagement.

Who will benefit?

• Farmers
• Farmers' organisations
• Government policy-makers

• Private agro-enterprises (including those owned by women and young people)
• Financiers
• Decision-makers in international organisations and NGOs
• Consumers

What impact will we have?

Farmers will be able to use the outputs of the project to increase their livelihoods and move out of poverty. They will have increased resilience to climate change. Private-sector players will increase investments that support the adoption of climate-resilient agri-food solutions, and the public sector will take steps towards developing and implementing conducive policies and incentives to support their adoption.

How will we sustain it?

Co-ownership of the project and its activities by the partners will increase their interest in the success of the project. The private sector will be engaged and so identify investment opportunities to continue the activities of the project. Partnering with organisations with a shared interest in climate solutions will ensure the work continues in the long term.

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