Working together online to support farmers during lockdown in India

55 year old Valli Kupuswamy carries a bag of grass (for cattle) she collected from her paddy field in Embalam village outside of Pondicherry, India. Photo: Sanjit Das/Panos
“Necessity is the mother of invention” – Plato This is a famous phrase, indicating that a need or problem encourages creative efforts to meet the need or solve the problem. The world is currently going through a difficult time due to COVID-19 pandemic, which has resulted in an almost-complete shutdown of all activities across the…
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More women are getting access to plant health advice through Plantwise and they grow the same crops as men

female farmer at a plant clinic
It is widely known that women have less access than men to agricultural extension services. Extension agents most often speak to household heads who tend to be men, as well as other male farmers. Plus, the extension agents themselves also tend to be men. Women often work longer hours than men too (12-17 hours per…
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Lockdown support: farmers dial in to agri-experts for help

This article was originally published the M. S. Swaminathan Research Foundation website The phone never stopped ringing at this one place in Pudukkottai district, Tamil Nadu all through April 1st. The event was a special phone-in program organized by MSSRF in collaboration with Department of Agriculture, Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Vamban. Agriculture advisors and farmers…
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New plant doctors in India “monitor the field through a farmer’s eyes”

Launching of Plantwise training in the state of Madhya Pradesh, India. With the support of the State Government of Madhya Pradesh, under an RKVY scheme, a 6-day training programme on Plantwise modules was conducted at the Borlaug Institute for South Asia (BISA), Jabalpur, in technical collaboration with CABI.
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More than advice: farmers say paid-for extension must provide a “bundle of services”

Chinyunyu Plant Clinic in Rufunsa district, Zambia.
Agricultural advisory services are a critical factor to promoting agricultural development, and investments in extension services are potentially important tools for improving agricultural productivity and increasing farmers’ incomes, two desirable outcomes of food security and poverty reduction articulated in MDGs and SDGs.
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Farmers helping farmers to solve crop problems in Nepal

female farmer in Nepal
A farmer has to organize a thousand things before getting the final returns from the crop they planted. Choosing the right season and variety of crop, managing the labour forces during the critical crop periods, water management or waiting for rainfall, crop nutrient management, harvesting the crops, managing the post-harvest losses, and then finally selling…
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Plantwise impact – what have the last eight years taught us?

Chinyunyu Plant Clinic in Rufunsa district, Zambia. Photo: David Ng’ambi for CABI
Eight years ago, in 2011, CABI launched its Plantwise programme, an ambitious endeavour, which has involved more than 200 partner organisations in 34 countries across Asia, Africa and the Americas since inception. Plantwise became CABI’s flagship programme and quickly caught a lot of attention due to its innovative, system-oriented approach to deliver practical plant health advice to smallholder farmers.
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Homemade botanical remedies: can they really work for pest control?

For many low-income farmers, commercial pesticides are too costly to use. Seemingly, the next best option for many is to turn to homemade botanical insecticides using local sources. But how reliable are these resources, and are they safe to recommend? A CABI-authored paper published in Agronomy for Sustainable Development reviews the efficacy of some of…
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“We the women can do it.” Meet Jacinta, a farmer from Bolivia

In a new video, Plantwise follows the life of Jacinta Delgadillo, a farmer from Comarapa, Bolivia. Jacinta and her family grow beans, peppers, and other crops for food and to generate an income. When the crops are attacked by pests and diseases, Jacinta uses her local plant clinic to gain knowledge on how to better…
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Farmers in Malawi fund first purpose-built permanent plant clinic to fight pests and diseases

Brick-built Malawi clinic
A group of farmers in Ntcheu district, Central Malawi, have clubbed together to fund the first purpose-built permanent plant clinic to help fight a range of crop-devastating pests and diseases that threaten their livelihoods and food security. Pengapenga Plant Clinic, which previously operated under a tree in the market place, is now providing a more…
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