Nelia is faced with new challenges in Mozambique, including the cycle of frequent droughts and drenching rains. Through her involvement with the Resilient Agricultural Markets Activity project in the Beira Corridor of Mozambique, she is learning how to increase productivity, profitability and resilience of her farm through the adoption of conservation agricultural practices, like low/no tillage, soil coverage and crop diversification. Key to the success of this work is training of model family farmers - like Nelia - who demonstrate the benefits of conservation agriculture in their own fields.
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Many farmers in coastal Sierra Leone cultivate rice as their staple food. In doing that, they clear land including mangrove forests to make way for their rice farms. Unfortunately, this has a counterproductive effect as the water during high tides overwhelms the rice farms and destroys these crops. WA BiCC introduced this new approach called "rice-mangrove integration" where mangrove plants are replanted around the rice farms to protect the rice crops from overwhelming amounts of water. These mangrove forests also serve as spawning grounds for fish, oysters, and other aquatic species, increasing food security in these communities, including Bonthe in coastal Sierra Leone.
Limón Province, Costa Rica, November 2014. Pineapples are by definition unsustainable, requiring high use of agrochemicals and replacing large swaths of land with a single, spiny crop. However, pineapples are also extremely popular, so in spite of their inherent unsustainability, they’re not going anywhere. To meet increasing global demand for sustainably produced crops, companies in Costa Rica are investing in improved agricultural practices, certifications, and better conditions for laborers.
Chirripo Volcano, Costa Rica, 2014. Agroforestry is gaining popularity worldwide as a method of sustainable land management. At AsoProLa, an agricultural cooperative high in the mountains of Costa Rica's Puntarenas province, coffee is grown in the shade of banana trees. Coffee grown in this manner requires less agrochemicals, provides habitat to animals, and tastes better than non-shade grown varieties.
Within the framework of the “Alliance for Sustainable Landscapes and Markets”, financed by USAID and implemented by Rainforest Alliance in Mexico, we strengthen resilient, sustainable farm, and forestland management of coffee producers in Chiapas. One of the main goals with our partner Olam is to reforest 4,000 hectares around coffee farms in Chiapas in order to preserve the region’s natural resources and strengthen the forest management of coffee producers. Women from the collective “Oro Verde”, who are working with Olam, are implementing sustainable practices in reforestation and landscape restoration like soil conservation, waste management, plant nurseries management, and tree planting. The inclusion of women in community-led actions for reforestation and landscape restoration is essential to accomplish more and better results in sustainable forestry management and climate smart agriculture. Photo taken in Sinai, Chiapas, 2019.
A man harvests water lilies from a Community Fish Refuge in Pursat, Cambodia. The Feed the Future Cambodia Rice Field Fisheries II is supporting 140 communities in rural Cambodia to improve and manage local Community Fish Refuges to provide improved habitat and protection for valuable wild fish populations, and to provide water for many other uses, particularly in seasonal and unseasonable dry periods. Well-managed fish refuges led to a 71% increase in fish catch by the poorest households, strengthening food and nutrition security. Photo credit:
Two agricultural extensionists from the Mam Mayan population of Todos Santos undergoing a field training day for improved post harvest practices. Todos Santos Cuchumatán is a municipality from Huehuetenango, at 12,559ft elevation, a drought or extreme rainfall have serious effects on smallholder farmers crops, therefore the PHLIL helps this farmers improve their resilience to climate change by improving post-harvest practices, reducing contamination of their corn and increasing their yields, ensuring food safety in adverse conditions. Todos Santos Cuchumatán, Huehuetenango, Guatemala. October 25, 2017.
Feed the Future Post Harvest Loss Innovation Lab Guatemala, Asociación Share de Guatemala.
Costa Rica, November 2014. The fertile fields of Costa Rica as seen from the slopes of Irazú volcano. Costa Rica's government acknowledges the importance of environmental sustainability, and has created many programs to incentivize good practices by the agriculture and infrastructure sectors, among others.
Fradian Murray, a research assistant, assesses a cassava trial plot in Saint Thomas, Jamaica. Through the USAID-funded Jamaica Rural Economy and Ecosystems Adapting to Climate Change project, Fradian is helping smallholder farmers, including women, sell their cassava crop to the Jamaican beer company Red Stripe and secure better livelihoods and futures in the face of mounting climate risks.