FAO organises capacity building programmes for Solomon Island farmers

FAO soloFarmers and farmers’ groups in Guadalcanal, Malaita and Temotu provinces in Solomon Islands have completed training on improving production and farm management practices

Technical topics such as rapid multiplication on taro and yam, seed saving, nursery management, soil fertility management, composting, farm management and record keeping were covered during these three “Master Class training” workshops organised in Guadalcanal, Malaita and Temotu. Training materials on the mentioned topics were developed and pilot tested. Established demonstration sites and nurseries under this project, were used for more practical and in-field training.

FAO is working together with Kastom Gaden Association (KGA) to improve agriculture production practices of root and cash crops and build the capacity of farmers and farmers’ group on farm management.

The Government of Solomon Islands has identified as a priority the promotion of lokal kaikai (local food consumption) for healthy diets in the Solomon Islands Food Security, Food Safety and Nutrition Policy, the Solomon Islands National Nutrition and Healthy Lifestyle Plan and the Agriculture and Livestock Sector Policy.

“By improving the agriculture production and farm management practices, this project can help to improve the availability and access to lokal kaikai around the Solomon Islands”, explained KGA staffer Pitakia Tikai.

The project also provides assistance to school canteens and food vendors to improve methods of processing local food items into value-added products. Increasing the consumption of local food, particularly root crops high in micronutrients will contribute to improving the food and nutritional security of rural communities in the Solomon Islands.

“By improving the marketing linkages between farmers’ organizations and school canteens, this project can help to improve the nutrition profile of school meals and nutrition outcomes among young people”, explained Shukrullah Sherzad, FAO agribusiness value chains consultant.

The Government is promoting enhanced synergies between agriculture and the education sectors and the adoption of improved production and marketing practices by small farmers to tackle the food and nutrition challenges faced by the nation and enhance rural livelihoods through employment creation in the agriculture sector particularly for unemployed youth.

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