CIP-LED IRISH funded project improves livelihoods of Malawians

At least 273,000 households have benefited from the potato seed multiplication system which is being implemented by the Department of Agriculture Research Services (DARS) in collaboration with CIP International Potato Center.

The revelation has been made on the sidelines of a visit by Irish government officials who are funding the project.

Country manager for CIP Paul Demo told YFM online that the project has improved the livelihoods of farmers nutritionally, financially among others.

“This project has been implemented since 2007, we begun with research back then and ever since, we have registered significant progress because we have established 11 varieties of crops and managed to reach out to 22 districts and only six are remaining,” said Demo.

Demo also pointed out that they are collaborating well with the private sector in order for farmers to have access to markets thereby enabling the companies to add value to the products.

Commenting on the progress of the project chairman of the Irish Committee on Foreign Affairs Brendan Smith said they are impressed with the impact which the project has made since its inception and pledged to continue supporting the government of Malawi.

“We applaud CIP and Bvumbwe Research Station for ensuring that the project benefits the poor Malawian, since Malawi is mostly hit by dry spells crop diversification is very important because it bails out the people hit by hunger during dry days.” he said.

Irish potatoes, sweet potatoes as well as cassava are drought tolerant crops and can be cropped, one to three times per year.

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