The African Cassava Agronomy Initiative project has placed a high priority on creating materials that will help both partners and end users to easily understand, use and apply recommendations from the AKILIMO agronomy advice tools.
Among the materials developed is the AKILIMO farmer’s guide. An image and text illustration outline the good agronomic practices for growing cassava. The practices championed in the farmer’s guide are an important part of realizing the full benefits of the recommendations from the AKILIMO agronomy advice tools.
Beginning June, ACAI has been conducting pre-tests of using the guide with farmers in the field in both Nigeria and Tanzania. In the pretest process, the target audience is allowed to interact with the guide and find out whether it works and identify weaknesses that need to be addressed.
The project scheduled pre-test sessions at 19 different locations, 10 across Nigeria and 9 in Tanzania. At the time of this publication, the project team together with partners have covered 5 locations in Nigeria and 4 in Tanzania.
Farmers and extension agents participating in the pretest have been randomly selected across cassava growing agro-ecological zones like Cross River, Benue, Oyo, Osun, Ondo, states in Nigeria and Mkuranga, Kisarawe, Chalinze and Sengerema districts in Tanzania.
The teams are gathering farmers’ and extension agents’ views about the illustrations in the guide and the clarity of the content as well. The findings from the pretest will help ensure that farmers understand the message in the farmer’s guide to the extent that they can make better measurements and precise estimation on input requirements and expected outputs (Yield, Revenue and Profit).