RCE Annual Report 2009

Agriculture is the primary source of livelihood for about 65 percent of Africans representing 30–40 percent of Africa's GDP and accounting for almost 60 percent of Africa's export income. Since small-scale farms account for more than 90 percent of Africa's agricultural production and are dominated by the poor, AquaFish development platforms emphasize that Aquaculutre interventions must be centered on the small farmer. Elimination of chronic poverty requires mechanisms to manage the risk, vulnerability and other constraints that undercut the nutritional, health and educational investments needed to bolster the human capital of the next generation and break the inequitable inter-generational transmission of poverty. Within this context, the pathway taken by AquaFish is poverty alleviation and food security improvement through sustainable aquaculture development and aquatic resources management.

The Aquaculture and Fisheries CRSP is committed to directing at least 25% of its total budget to support the Presidential Initiative to End Hunger in Africa (IEHA) launched in 2002.  This is a multi-year effort designed to help increase agricultural income and fulfill the United Nations' Millennium Development Goal. This initiative focuses on promoting agricultural growth and building an African-led partnership to cut hunger and poverty by investing in agriculture oriented toward small-scale farmers. The six countries currently included in IEHA are Kenya, Ghana, Mali, Mozambique, Uganda and Zambia.

The AquaFish CRSP Strategy for Achieving Development Impact focuses on Research, capacity building, information dissemination, and IEHA country involvement. Focal areas included in this report cut across, improving nutrition and health, maximizing water, soil quality and productivity, advancing IPM practices, broadening market access, increasing incomes, and improving food quality, processing, and safety.  This is building on the Expert Panel meeting held in Nairobi in 2002 funded by ACRSP that opened the way for collaboration among Africa countries and US institutions. During this meeting, various scientists discussed and agreed on a set of priorities for aquaculture development in Africa.

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