See more from this Session: Symposium--Advancing Agronomy Through Public-Private Collaboration
Wednesday, October 19, 2011: 10:50 AM
Henry Gonzalez Convention Center, Ballroom C-2, Ballroom Level
Total world supplies of food, feed, and fiber have increased. However, wheat, rice, and maize yields have been struggling to maintain per annum linear increases of 41, 53, and 64 kg/ha respectively, while the projected per annum demand to 2050 is equivalent to increases of 49, 70, and 79 kg/ha. Infrastructure in many developing areas limits the delivery of inputs and access to markets, especially in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Cropping intensification, expanded crop land, and higher input technologies offer promise of increased total production, however, major natural resource, environmental and social-economic constraints exist to limit production. Still, numerous examples exist of how partnering among and within public and private sectors can lead to the agronomic progress needed. Three diverse examples will be reviewed in the presentation:
Cereal Systems Initiative for South Asia (CSISA). A project envisioned to provide an overall strategy and umbrella for contributing new science and technologies to accelerating short- and long-term cereal production growth in South Asia’s most important grain baskets. It relies on a private-public consortium for both funding and expertise. Public and private partners are working together for developing and implementing innovative cereal technologies and knowledge for improving livelihood of South Asian farmers.
Fertilizer BMPs for Brazil. A three-phase, integrated program comprised of a national conference, publication of a review book, and regional practitioner workshops. In this case, a private sector entity (the International Plant Nutrition Institute) served as a third party to bring together the lead scientists in Brazil and several from other countries to address the state of the science in fertilizer best management practices for Brazil. Partnering between public and private sectors provided a means of assembling the science, generating reference materials, and transferring the knowledge gained into farmer practice.
Poverty Alleviation via Corn Improvement and Family Development in Guatemala. A precursor to advancing agronomy in developing regions frequently is intervention in social problems, in the case of these mountain Mayan villages, air and water quality in the home. Accomplishing such a task requires a diverse set of well integrated partners. Starting with issues associated with open fires in the home, progressing to issues in the corn field, and returning again to the home with improved family income, nutrition and health, and eventually education, the circle of poverty in these villages can be broken.
In all three examples, the essential element for success is partnering, with the partners working as a community where members share common goals and complimentary resources.