Burkina Faso is a low-income Sahelian country with limited natural resources. The country’s economy is largely based on agriculture, which employs almost 80% of the active population. However, production is insufficient to meet the needs of the entire nation. The difficulties are exacerbated by climate change – which often compromise a large part of the crops – by the limited availability of agricultural equipment and the limited knowledge of production techniques, conservation and processing of products. Added to these are the growing insecurity, particularly in the north of the country, and the recent impact of the Covid19 pandemic.
In the districts of Garando and Tenkodogo, affected by the project, rice is one of the basic nutritional elements of the population’s diet. In fact, in the villages of the area there is a production of rain-fed rice supported by the State, which distributes its seeds. Alongside the large producers who grow rice to market it there are some small producers, especially women, who cultivate for their own consumption.
Garango, Burkina Faso
Tenkodogo, Burkina Faso
The project, carried out in partnership with AES-CCC, aims to improve the nutritional health of rural communities, favoring the population’s access to child malnutrition services and spreading efficient systems of family cultivation and agri-food processing.
The project is aimed at women rice farmers with the aim of strengthening and promoting family production, especially in situations of greatest vulnerability. In fact, the small production for self-consumption allows families to alternate corn and millet with rice, guaranteeing an improvement in nutritional standards.
The proposed technique is that of étuvage (paraboiled), which allows you to produce a better quality rice from a nutritional point of view and more easily preserved over time than that which is only peeled.
Garango and Tenkodogo health districts,
1,000 rice-producing women and their families
1. Promotion of family-level rain rice production
In synergy with the Regional Directorate of Agriculture, action will be taken on 100 hectares cultivated with rice mainly by a thousand women, who will be trained and accompanied in the production of rice and in the manufacture of compost with techniques that will allow the elimination of expensive and chemical fertilizer pollutants.
2. Strengthening of the artisanal processing of rice
The construction and start-up of 10 centers for the processing of rice with the parboiled technique are planned. The centers will be managed by as many groups of about 20 women, each set up in a cooperative. On land already available to the group or granted by the authorities, a laboratory will be built equipped with working tools and machines for processing rice, beater and dehuller.
3. Dissemination of results
Specific training is provided for 3 growers from each processing center: the first on étuvagé techniques, the second on the use of the hulling and threshing machines, and the third on the management and administrative methods for managing the centers. The participants will in turn train the other women to ensure that the working techniques are known by all.
The last phase involves the development of a business plan for each processing center in order to determine the quantities that each center will have to transform over the course of the year in order to be sustainable and ensure the continuity of the service over time.
I am Giulia Polato, born in 1989, scout and aid worker. Since I was a child, my family taught me a certain attention to social issues. The environment in which I grew up helped me to develop a certain pattern of thought and action. I remember my mother saying to me with her index finger menacingly relieved not to waste food “because African children die […]