Ethiopia: Research Centres Improving the Lives of Farmers – AllAfrica.com

Niguse Haile is a farmer from Mieso district Argiti Kebele in Western Hararghe. For a long period of time, he has been harvesting millet once a year at his 1.5 hectare of land. Remembering those days, he regretted for being late to communicate with the zone agricultural institute center. However last year, he joined the customers of Chiro national millet research and training center. Working closely with the center expertise, he was able to reduce the problems related with traditional farming. He noted that the effect of the center’s intensified all-rounded support has brought significant change in his life.

According to him, the center helped him a lot in supplying a swift seeds and the expertise support was crucial showcasing how to implement modern agricultural technologies. “Previously we have been sowing millet that was matured after nine months but now the center delivered us a three-month swift millet and masho seeds that was feasible to produce both crops once. And it was a very surprising mobility and all the surrounding farmers are very enthusiastic to implement the new swift seed and double cropping so as to boost their productivity,” he added.

Niguse remembered that last year he was able to produce 50 quintals of millet that had profited him some 45,000 Birr. This year following the result of a continual assessment and monitoring assistance of the center, Niguse believed to produce some 10 quintal masho that would estimated to have 50, 000 Birr worth. As soon as finishing harvesting the masho, he thought to replace the land with the new melkam millet seed. He is planning to buy a tractor to prompt his farming and to lead a better life with his five families.

Niguse Hailu is not the only person whom benefited from the Chiro center service. There are some 24 model farmers utilizing the technical and seed support by the center in similar district. On the other hand, the center works vastly at zonal level and implement all the best to improve farmer’s life and to make them free of any drought caused problems. Farmer Jemila Hassen is another farmer from Gemechis district who benefited from the center’s support. She said that the new millet swift seed has a great difference with the previous one for its benefit in both productivity and its durability as a fodder.

According to Chiro National Millet Research and Training Center Director Solomon Zewdu the center has been working vastly in supporting farmers by providing technical support and swift seeds delivering.



He said that the main initiation of the center to be located at Chiro town is for stabilizing the area from climate change influence. In this regard, the center is doing well in producing drought resistant specialized seeds and adopting the farmers with the new seeds. Accordingly, he said the center distributed a swift millet and masho seeds for 900 farmers at zonal level. He also said that the center has also been orienting farmers how to boost productivity through double cropping and sowing specialized swift seeds. The center is working its level best to respond farmer’s request on the enhancement of advanced and intensified technical support.

The center has two practical field attempting places in Mieso and Gemechis district. The two districts have been receiving the new seeds that are believed to adopt easily with the area’s climate and to support the farmers in producing a surplus product that boosts their income. While the new seeds are capable of resisting weeds by their own, the center is also distributing pesticides assumed for unexpected pandemic phenomenon.

National Millet Research Coordination Head at Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research Dr. Taye Tadesse said that previously the region has been related with drought. However, the new technical support and the short term-productivity is changing the situation. The regular millet has been produced in 30 quintals per hectare within 9 months. Withal, the swift one (dekeba millet) is a 3 month crop that avails 50 quintal per hectare. Additionally, the new seed is also drought resistant therefore in order to expand such advance the Institute will intensify its support to farmers in the region in particular and throughout the nation in general, according to the head.

Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research Director Dr. Fentahun Mengistu on his part said that the Institute is performing well in empowering the nation farmers through various technical and modern systems so as to increase their capacity to implement and benefited well by utilizing advanced mechanisms offered by the Institute. The Institute is continually investigating various farming advanced schemes under the 17 research centers whether in technology or providing swift farming seeds. Accordingly, the Institute planned to serve some 200,000 farmers of the nation to be advantaged from the modern technical, fertilizers, pesticides and swift seed delivering assistance.

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