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Title: Enhancing The Profitability Of Small Aquaculture Operations In Ghana, Kenya, and Tanzania
Lead US University: Oregon State University
Lines of Research:
Feed the Future (FtF) is a new US Government initiative to reduce poverty and hunger around the globe. Recognizing that agriculture and rural development have long been neglected in international aid programs, FtF renews a commitment towards sustainable global food security through reinvestment in these areas. USAID has recognized the severe impact poverty has on livelihoods, health, and ecosystems and has endeavored to align its strategies and goals within the FtF initiative.
Oregon State University's AquaFish CRSP has responded with a project that addresses FtF goals and helps reduce gnawing development problems that contribute to keeping the poor poor. This project, Enhancing the Profitability of Small Aquaculture Operations in Ghana, Kenya, and Tanzania, is framed around USAID and FtF objectives by investing in strong, evidence-based efforts. The project shares the FtF aim of accelerating progress toward meeting the poverty and hunger Millennium Development Goals, as measured by reducing the prevalence of poverty and reducing the incidence of underweight children. Our project is working towards these goals by accelerating inclusive agriculture sector growth through improved agricultural productivity, expanded markets and trade, and increased economic resilience in vulnerable rural communities. Improvements in nutritional status are expected to result from increased access to diverse and high quality foods. The ability to access and utilize food must remain stable and sustained over time. Paying attention to cross cutting themes such as gender, environment (climate change), and natural resources management can result in improved nutrition for all family members.
The AquaFish CRSP FtF project works in three of the focus countries identified by FtF: Ghana, Kenya, and Tanzania. Feed the Future's overarching goal is "to sustainably reduce global hunger and poverty by tackling their root causes and employing proven strategies for achieving large scale and lasting impact." We are focusing on small-scale agricultural producers, high quality seed, and best management practices, working with private sector partners to expand commercially sustainable agro-input industries and dealer networks, including small enterprises and seed production training to improve quality management. Increased access to inputs will be coupled with strategies to help ensure their safe and sustainable use. Our technologies will be refined and tailored to local conditions by supporting national research institutes and building local research capacities, including training local researchers and technicians. If gender inequalities inhibit demand, then these inequalities will be addressed. Our aim is to provide women with equal access to affordable inputs and improved techniques and technology.
The project additionally supports FtF objectives in the area of Expanding Markets and Trade, through the development and dissemination of market information for producers and enterprise owners, including activities that focus on equitable access for women. Greater access to market information can increase the ability of smallscale agricultural producers to participate in formal and higher-value markets. By improving post-harvest market infrastructure, our project aims to make markets work better for women and men agricultural producers and to extend the availability of nutritious foods. Through the reach of the project, our results will also aid FtF's objective of Improving Nutritional Status (FtF GUIDE, section 3.3.2), by improving diet quality and diversity through the addition of animal source protein and micronutrients commonly found in fish.