Program C: Sustainable Agricultural Development and Off Farm Income

Objectives:

The major objective of the Component is to contribute to achieving sustainable agricultural development as an important component of integrated rural development, with a focus on income generating activities and employment, to simultaneously face the challenges of food and nutrition security and reducing poverty.

Progress: (October-December 2013)

In the 4th Quarter, financial tenders were forwarded to OUDA for announcement/issuance in the national newspapers for the procurement of the equipment needed for several of the implemented projects. The submitted tenders covered equipment for recycling of agricultural residues, integrated fish farms, and milk collection and processing plants at the district level. The selection of the sites for the implementation of several outputs (recycling agricultural residues, integrated fish farms, dairy processing on district level as well as milk processing at the household levels) was completed. The selection was based on the finalized prefeasibility studies and the assessment of all interested NGOs following the UNDP/OUDA procedures. Seven pre-feasibility/case studies were finalized in this quarter in addition to the 8 completed in previous quarters. Also, training manuals for recycling agricultural residues and roof gardening were prepared. Five training workshops were conducted benefiting 160 participants. The participants in these workshops included NGOs staff, extension specialist from the Ministry of Agriculture and farmers. 60 farmers were trained as well as 30 extension specialists. 

Specific Activities: 

Recycling of Agricultural Residues and Organic Farming: The selection of the partner NGOs managing the recycling operation at the district level was completed. The two recycling activities/centers will be carried in collaboration with the Livestock Cooperative in Refaa in Farshout and the Al Nedaa Community Development Association in Dishna. The selection of the technical specifications of the required equipment and the nature of the activities was based on the cropping pattern in these districts and the quantities of residues available for recycling. A financial tender to procure the needed equipment was submitted to OUDA/UNDP for announcement in the National Newspapers.

A workshop was held during the period 26-28/11/2013 at the Agriculture Directorate in Qena to enhance knowledge about recycling of agricultural residues in Qena. The workshop was attended by 29 participants from the Local Community Development Associations - NGOs, the staff of the Ministry of Agriculture in Qena and farmers.  A training manual including the Presentations and Lectures was prepared and distributed to the participants in the workshop.

Integrated Fish-Agriculture Farm: The pre-feasibility study was completed. Decisions were made on the selection of pilot area, villages and sites of integrated fish farms. Two locations and collaborating NGOs were identified: (1) Dandarah Development and Culture Center, Dandarah, Qena District and (2) Bear Ambar Community Development Association, Bear Ambar, Qeft District. More analysis and assessment are needed to select the third location since two locations were short listed in Koos District. The design and establishment of a pilot integrated farm in first and second locations (including construction; procurement; equipment installation; etc) was initiated and a land topography surveys were carried out.  A tender was submitted to OUDA for announcement in National Newspapers to initiate the civil work and construction in both locations at Dandarah and Bear Ambar. The networking with the General Authority for Fish Resources Development (GAFRD) resulted in the issuance of Decree No. 869 for 2013 dated 10/10/2013 by its chairman to establish a technical committee to provide needed support to ENID in establishing the envisaged Integrated Fish Farms. A training workshop was held in the University of South Valley during the period 8-10/12/2013 for integrated fish farms. The workshop was attended by 30 participants who became better aware about the importance and impacts as well as the technical dimensions of the recycling of agricultural residues. 

Dairy Processing Plants in two Districts: The selection of villages and districts for the envisaged dairy collection and processing plants. The two sites include Halfaia Bahari, Nag Hamadi (Shabab El Khier); and Olaiqat, Koos (Local Community Development in Olaiqat). A pre-feasibility study for milk collection and processing at the district level was prepared. Tenders were submitted to OUDA for announcement in National Newspapers to procure the needed equipment. A training workshop was carried out during the period 1-3/12/2013 in Qena. Forty participants attended the workshop. More training will take place upon installation of the equipment and the operation of the envisaged plants. Already 40 young women and men were trained and better aware about milk processing in 2013.

Dairy Production System at the Household Level: The pre-feasibility study for household milk processing and the selection of villages and districts for the household dairy processing operations was completed. The selection criteria for the participating households will included: (1) women participating positively in Programs A and D of ENID; and (2) Poor women/households received buffalos through the MALR and AOAD initiative in Qena. Priority will be given to women in districts with adequate milk production such as Dishna, Koos, and Abu Tesht. Ten women were trained in 2013 through the training mentioned above under “Dairy Processing Plants in Two Districts”. These 10 women were selected from potential districts with activities under ENID Programmes A and D. 

Poultry Backyard Production System: The activity will start by Q1-2014 according to the work plan.

Policy Analysis Matrix (PAM) Model for Assessing the Comparative Advantage and the Efficiency of the Crop and Livestock Production

Supported by Optimal Crop Mix/Rotation: One Manual "Towards More Efficient Use of Agricultural Resources in Upper Egypt: Optimum Cropping Pattern Under Different Scenarios in Qena" was finalized and is available upon request; and in addition a Policy Brief on "Towards more efficient use of agricultural resources in Upper Egypt: Optimum cropping pattern under different scenarios in Qena" is finalized. Drafts were shared with partners in the Agriculture Department, Qena and a copy was shared with H.E. the Governor.

Farmers Field Schools (FFS): Training sessions for trainers and extension specialist/supervisors were organized. Two workshops were implemented as planned in 2013:  the first on "Farmers Field Schools –FFS" during the period 8-9/12/2013 attended by 30 participants; and the second on "Training of Trainers and Extension Staff" held during the period 16-17/12/2013. In addition, a manual was prepared for Farmers Field Schools.

Value Chain for each Priority Crop or Livestock and Fisheries Products: Seven value chain assessment/case studies for promising products/projects were produced during the 4th quarter 2013. Accordingly, the following 15 case studies/pre-feasibility/value chain assessment were produced during 2013: (1) Recycling agricultural residues to produce organic fertilizers (Compost) and animal feed (silage) (Pre-Feasibility Study); (2) Milk collection and processing at the District level (Pre-Feasibility Study); (3) Home produced milk processing at the household level (Pre-Feasibility Study); (4) Milk collection and processing at the Governorate level (Pre-Feasibility Study); (5) Fish Production Farm (Pre-Feasibility Study); (6) Integrated Fish Farm (Pre-Feasibility Study);  (7) Roof Gardening and Production of Vegetables at the Urban Household Level (Pre-Feasibility Study); (8) Poultry Backyard Production at the Household Level (Pre-Feasibility Study); (9) Solar energy in Water Pumping for Irrigation (case Study); (10) Cumin Production (Case Study – Value Chain); (11) Fennel Production (Case Study – Value Chain); (12) Fenugreek Production (Case Study – Value Chain); (13) Hibiscus Production (Case Study – Value Chain); (14) Anise Production (Case Study – Value Chain); and (15) Sheep Production (Pre-Feasibility Study).  

Pilot Project for High Productivity Agricultural Techniques to Desert Areas (outside Zemam) (Solar Energy): Formation of agenda for sessions for the focus group and discussion within farmers’ schools sessions specific for desert farming and best practices was completed, and an agenda for sessions in 2014 was prepared within the Farmers Field Schools.

The sites to use solar energy in underground water pumping outside the zemam will depend on the selection of the sites for the integrated fish farms as mentioned above. The selected sites of Dandarah Development and Culture Center – Qena District (10 feddans) and Bear Amber Community Development Association - Qift District were visited by the Experts.  Selection of best and modern practices within the integrated pilot farm on the use of solar energy was completed.  Introduce and benefit from solar energy and/or other appropriate modern practices and techniques. Due to increasing prices in the local market, price offers for different capacities of solar energy and other appropriate modern practices and techniques were obtained and a market survey was carried out before a tender is announced in National Newspaper. 

Roof Gardens to Support Food and Nutrition Security: A pre-feasibility study and a training manual for roof gardens were finalized. The manual will be distributed during the preparatory training sessions by Q1-2014.

This activity for roof gardens will be selected following criterions established including women participating positively in Programs A and D of ENID. Meanwhile, some units could be implemented in urban areas through Community Development Associations to be selected by Program C. Priority will be given to schools and Youth Centers in poor urban areas. Networking was enhanced and a top expert from Ain Shams University was identified for possible collaboration with ENID in implementing this activity.

Next Steps:

  1. Procure needed equipment for recycling of agricultural residues, milk processing and fish farms;
  2. Initiate actions for activities related to Roof Gardening;
  3. Initiate actions for activities related to Poultry Backyard
  4. Initiate actions for the procurement of solar energy equipment 


Risks:

  1. The implementation of Poultry Backyard, Household Milk Processing and Roof Gardening will be integrated with activities of Program A and D for harmonization and optimum impact. The implementation of these activities may be delayed due to the delay in implementation of other ENID’s program A and D.
  2. Implementation in ground may be delayed due to lengthy procedures for tenders and bids within OUDA rules and regulations. However, these rules are acceptable for transparency.
  3. Higher prices for solar energy panels and equipment in the market may lead to reconsideration for the total number of units to be installed. 

Team Leader: Dr. Dyaa Abdou