TECHNOLOGY TESTING AND TRANSFER
- Cabbage varieties
- Dwarf papaya varieties
- Early maturing cowpeas and mungbean varieties
- Maize varieties
- Tomato varieties
- Forage grasses: alfalfa, dolichos, napier, Rhodes and Sudan grass
The Key Fundamentals of SATG’s Operational Model
- Partnership with farmers in the development of new agricultural technologies
- Co-ownership with farmers of the new agricultural technologies
SATG collaborates with national and international research institutions in East African region and elsewhere to source superior crop varieties for testing in Somalia. Over the years, SATG has introduced many different crop varieties including cabbage, dwarf papaya, early maturing cowpeas and mungbeans, maize, tomato and forage grasses such as alfalfa, dolichos, napier grass, Rhodes grass and Sudan grass. These varieties are then evaluated for yield and other agronomic characteristics at the Agri-Business Incubation Centre (ABIC) in Afgoi and substations in Aw-dhegle and Balad. Those varieties that perform well are further tested in farmers’ fields in demonstration plots. Lead and contact farmers run the demonstration plots.
SATG has over 1500 lead and contact farmers. It values farmer participation in the testing of the new varieties and recognizes the importance of joint ownership of the new technology. This is the key fundamental in SATG’s working approach.
Testing also includes soil analysis, as plant nutrients such as phosphorous and nitrogen have been identified to be deficient in most Somalia soils. Soil samples are analyzed in the laboratory and based on the results of soil analysis informed decisions are made on a possible soil-nutrient intervention. Fertilizers such as Di-ammonium phosphate (DAP) and Urea, which are high in nitrogen and phosphorous, are recommended for use in deficient areas.
Who attends these workshops?
- Agricultural extension workers.
- Ministry of Agriculture officials.
- Representatives of institutes.
Good Agriculture Practices
- Land preparation
- Timely sowing
- Proper weeding
- Fertilizer application
- Control of pests and diseases
- Safe use of pesticides
Before the start of a new growing season, SATG engages in community mobilization where lead and contact farmers along with extension workers of the Ministry of Agriculture and SATG are selected and trained on good crop production practices, fertilizer application and safe handling and use of pesticides. In return, each lead farmer donates one jibaal (625m2) of land to be used as a demonstration plot. Through these means, technical knowledge is trickled down to these observant farmers. SATG demonstrates to the farmers the positive impact of new technologies on crop yields.
For example, application of DAP and urea to the local maize variety SOMTUX at the rate of 200 and 150 kg/ha, respectively, increased the dry grain yield by 291.6% compared with zero application.
Workshops are also conducted to share new information and also to discuss with the farming fraternity the cost, impact, efficiency and sustainability of new technologies. Farmers, agricultural extension workers, Ministry of Agriculture officials, agro-dealers, representatives of institutes of higher learning teaching agriculture and NGOs are invited to the workshops. These cost/benefit discussions also help improve the relationship between the agro-dealers and farmers as the agro-dealers will be encouraged to provide extension-type support services to the farmers.