CARI Produces 504 Metric Tons Seed Rice

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Farmers at work packaging .jpg

 

Mr. Aaron Marshall, team leader at the Central Agriculture Research Institute (CARI) in Suakoko, Bong County, has disclosed that 504 metric tons of seed rice was produced during the Ebola period.

Making the disclosure over the weekend in Gbarnga in an exclusive interview with the Daily Observer he said following the deadly Ebola outbreak, a lot of work was done at CARI.

He said that before the outbreak of Ebola, farmers  in Lofa, Nimba and in other counties had produced more rice and other foodstuff.

“At CARI, there are several streams of research going on.  We are researching different varieties of rice that would take only 70 -90 days to   germinate to yield more varieties of rice.

“Now that Ebola has drastically reduced, we have increased our workforce.   They were reduced by 250 during the Ebola crisis but have now been increased to 500 to the extent that the warehouse is producing 500 metric tons of seeds rice, and 50 hectares of cassava, which he described as the biggest progress CARI has made,” Mr.Marshall said.

He said at present CARI is working along with the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) to restore the productive assets of farmers and farmers’ groups by building essential infrastructure to support food production.

He indicated that through the West Africa Agricultural Productivity Program (WAAPP), Africa Rice and the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA), CARI is now producing and providing seeds and other  improved varieties to small-scale farmers and in return the farmers after they harvest their  farms bring back some seed rice to CARI.

“CARI has in recent years increased its cassava production from 25 to 50 hectares of 20 improved varieties of cassava that could produce ten times,” he said.

Mr. Marshall said, CARI, as an agriculture institution, will continue to work with local farmers to enable them grow and sell more food as well as increase their livelihoods.                                                

The institution, he said has over the years, renovated three fish ponds but has now increased to ten ponds to maintain fingerlings that will be harvested and given to farmers.

CARI team leader disclosed that the institution is not free from challenges, stating that the issue of funding and capacity remain major challenges to the institution.

He said some ways the Ministry of Agriculture is solving the problems is by offering scholarships to students to build their capacity.

He said during the heat of the Ebola outbreak, activities at the center slowed down, and kept functioning.

In an interview with a local farmer Mr. Napoleon Rennie, who is operating on 100 acres of farmland in Zeanzue, he said he has been farming for the past several years and has not benefitted from CARI activities.

He said he hoped to receive support from CARI, including seed rice to improve his farming activity to boost productivity.

Another farmer Madam Faith Flomo told the Daily Observer, “I plant peppers, okra and rice in Wainsue and I want support from the government. It’s my hope that CARI will provide me seeds to let me grow more food.”

She also said she would like to have more seeds for improved farming.Mr. Aaron Marshall, team leader at the Central Agriculture Research Institute (CARI) in Suakoko, Bong County, has disclosed that 504 metric tons of seed rice was produced during the Ebola period.

Making the disclosure over the weekend in Gbarnga in an exclusive interview with the Daily Observer he said following the deadly Ebola outbreak, a lot of work was done at CARI.

He said that before the outbreak of Ebola, farmers  in Lofa, Nimba and in other counties had produced more rice and other foodstuff.

“At CARI, there are several streams of research going on.  We are researching different varieties of rice that would take only 70 -90 days to   germinate to yield more varieties of rice.

“Now that Ebola has drastically reduced, we have increased our workforce.   They were reduced by 250 during the Ebola crisis but have now been increased to 500 to the extent that the warehouse is producing 500 metric tons of seeds rice, and 50 hectares of cassava, which he described as the biggest progress CARI has made,” Mr.Marshall said.

He said at present CARI is working along with the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) to restore the productive assets of farmers and farmers’ groups by building essential infrastructure to support food production.

He indicated that through the West Africa Agricultural Productivity Program (WAAPP), Africa Rice and the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA), CARI is now producing and providing seeds and other  improved varieties to small-scale farmers and in return the farmers after they harvest their  farms bring back some seed rice to CARI.

“CARI has in recent years increased its cassava production from 25 to 50 hectares of 20 improved varieties of cassava that could produce ten times,” he said.

Mr. Marshall said, CARI, as an agriculture institution, will continue to work with local farmers to enable them grow and sell more food as well as increase their livelihoods.                                                

The institution, he said has over the years, renovated three fish ponds but has now increased to ten ponds to maintain fingerlings that will be harvested and given to farmers.

 CARI team leader disclosed that the institution is not free from challenges, stating that the issue of funding and capacity remain major challenges to the institution.

He said some ways the Ministry of Agriculture is solving the problems is by offering scholarships to students to build their capacity.

He said during the heat of the Ebola outbreak, activities at the center slowed down, and kept functioning.

In an interview with a local farmer Mr. Napoleon Rennie, who is operating on 100 acres of farmland in Zeanzue, he said he has been farming for the past several years and has not benefitted from CARI activities.

He said he hoped to receive support from CARI, including seed rice to improve his farming activity to boost productivity.

Another farmer Madam Faith Flomo told the Daily Observer, “I plant peppers, okra and rice in Wainsue and I want support from the government. It’s my hope that CARI will provide me seeds to let me grow more food.”

She also said she would like to have more seeds for improved farming.

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