Title: Trip report
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00083003/00001
 Material Information
Title: Trip report El Salvador
Series Title: Trip report
Physical Description: 13 leaves : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: McDermott, J. K ( James Kenneth ), 1922-
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville Fla.
Publication Date: 1981
Subject: Agricultural extension work -- El Salvador   ( lcsh )
Agricultural systems -- Research -- El Salvador   ( lcsh )
Genre: non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: El Salvador
Statement of Responsibility: J. K. McDermott.
General Note: "August 8-19, 1977."
General Note: Photocopy.
General Note: "Primary purpose of this trip was to provide an input for the annual evaluation of the USAID multiple cropping project being implemented through a grant to CENTA in the form of a contract with the University of Florida."
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00083003
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 226299604

Full Text


AKME: J. K. McDermot TITLE:_

PERIOD OF TRAVEL: August 8 19, 1977

Associate Direct6t

ember 16, 1977



El Salvador

PURPOSE: Primary purpose of this trip was to provide an input for the annual

evaluation of the USAID multiple cropping project being implemented through a

grant to CENTA in the form of a contract with the University of Florida. Given

the critical role of national technology innovation systems, CENTA's rather long

history in the field, and its relevance to the U.F. project, it seemed expedient

to achieve a second purpose, an analysis of CENTA per se.

In this report, the study of CENTA will be presented first, since it has

so many implications for. the project. Persons contacted are listed at end of



.1 _____________________________ --



I i




I i
I ;
r i


S Background

CENTA is a relatively mature organization, dating from 1942. It is a
conventional, ol-line type of research and extension organization. It
deals in modern technology, emphasizing basic grains and genetics, and
relies heavily on modern inputs, such as credit, fertilizer, herbicides,
pesticides, and certified hybrid seed. Operating style consists in the
development of a commercial technology, guided heavily by agronomic
criteria, and in the persuading of farmers to adapt it with whatever
material assistance the public sector can provide. The research division
is divided into departments, and extension includes the three conventional
activities of agriculture, home economics, and youth work.

CENTA has a respectable record of achievement, particularly in seed with
emphasis on corn. It has done good work in genetics and breeding and has
made the seed widely available to farmers through its own efforts and
through its support to the seed industry. It is estimated that roughly
half of El Salvador's corn acreage is planted to certified seed. CENTO
sells about a million pounds of seed a year, through extension and coopera-
tives, and is responsible for quality control of the private trade. CENTA
prices are some 25 percent below those of the private seed trade, but
given the supply-demand situation its commercial operations do not seem to
cause disincentives to the private trade. CENTA seeds have a good reputation
in the export market which can handle any gluts experienced up until now.
Since my interest was stronger in research and extension I did not give
the seed technology division the attention it deserves.


CENTA is organized into four groups--a management and administration group
and three divisions of research, extension, and seed technology. This
three-division organization dates from 1972, when research, extension, and
teaching were organized into CENTA. The National Agricultural School, at
sub-university level, provided the teaching arm, but it has since re-
established its autonomy as ENA and was replaced in the CENTA structure
by the elevation of seed technology from the status of a department.

The management and administration group is made up of the office of experiment
station operations, information and documentation, legal counsel, external
assistance, planning, administration, personnel, audit, shops and maintenance,
and the CENTA-AID loan project (for physical plant construction.)

Extension also has a small headquarters group, consisting of the division
chief and a regional operations chief, plus one national program leader-
specialist in home improvement, small animals, small industries, 4-C (4-H)
clubs, human nutrition, and two in crop demonstration plot packages.

__' __J ^ i

CENTA has six extension regions. Ministry of Agriculture has four, and
CENTA maintains compatibility with that organization by simply dividing
the two largest into two and avoiding conflicting lines. The six regions
are divided into 12 zones which are responsible for some 72 extension
agencies. Each zone has a chief and an agriculture and home economics

An extension agency has a core staff of agriculturists, the agency chief
and three to four others, plus a 4-C agent, and one or two home agents,
and occasionally another representing one of the home economics programs.

The Division of Research is constituted by the eight departments of field
crops and horticulture, soils, parasitology, animal science, agricultural
chemistry, agricultural engineering, agricultural economics, and biometrics.

Seed technology has three departments--production, certification, and
processing plants.


CENTA is making some significant changes in its research program. Starting
in 1976 it has organized R and D efforts through interdisciplinary groups
(IDG) into programs, projects, sub-projects, and experiments.' The basic
grains program has four projects, each with an IDG, 74 subprojects and 162
experiments. The industrial crops program has three projects, each with an
IDG, 20 subprojects and 36 experiments. In the four other cases the IDG
is organized at the program level--vegetable crops, fruit crops, multi-crops,
and animal science--but these "programs" skip the "project" level-anT go
to subprojects. IDG's are commodity-oriented, all but one in crops. The
other departments do research and almost all are represented on all IDG's.

The size of the IDG's averages 20, ranging from 11 to 38. An individual
proposes a subproject to one of the IDG's. If it passes this group it goes
to the Technical Committee (TC), formed of department heads and division
chiefs. If it passes there, the proposer can work it up. The IDG organi-
zation and TC provide for monitoring subproject design and implementation
and for evaluation.

There is some fretting under the discipline imposed by the IDG, and it is
more cumbersome than the earlier way, but it is strongly defended by CENTA
leaders and appears to have more positive factors than negative. Some bugs
have been eliminated in its second year. The system not only brings resources
of several disciplines to a problem, it imposes a discipline to finish
work and maintain program stability. There is some indication that CENTA
has too many subprojects and in attempting to do too much simply can't
do all of it well.

___ ___ ~I __

The research program is undergoing other innovations. From a traditional
orientation to modern technology, CENTA seems to be moderatEng its doctrine
b.-y a greater consciousness of the farmer. Two things are happening. It
-aT begun a systematic screening of the farmer varieties of corn and beans,
finding they conduct themselves quite well in specific ecologies. Some
traditional germ plasm may be introduced into the breeding program.

CENTA has also begun a systematic study of the farmer. It has completed
what it calls a "Study of Cases," literally a survey of 95 farmers in
such detail as to cf~EOftitue virtually 95 case studies. Over a year these
farmers were visited two or three times a week to collect data. Some
analysis nas been done, but much data remain. CENTA has t1he problem now
knowing how to make the best use of this data and of economists in its

The animal science research is also an innovation. El Salvador, as do
many LA countries, divides crops and livestock. CENTA is a crops organi-
zation, beginning its livestock activity in the 1970's after merger with
the National Agricultural School. When the School separated itself from
CENTA, some of the livestock staff remained. Animal science research is
done on farms and does not make use of CENTA facilities. CENTA extension
is crops oriented and does little work in livestock, other than some small
species work for improved family nutrition. Another agency in the Ministry
does livestock promotion work, but I was not able to determine the collabora-
tion between it and CENTA's livestock group. Owing to its short history,
the group has not felt the need of a strong extension operation.

The traditional program seems to be doing well. A new hybrid corn will be
released soon, a varietal hybrid, with ETO and Tuxpeno Planta Baja (Short
Plant), to be called H-8. This is the same parentage as ICTA Tropical in
Guatemala. CENTA has demonstrated the viability of hybrids in a small-farm
agriculture, but is enthusiastic about some new synthetic corns. Its S-1
7 sorghum is .having some difficulties in the market, although it's proving
( jopular)in Guatemala's eastern area because of its value in tortillas fo7
home consumption. The country's first hybrid sorghum is expected to be
released soon. The private trade deals mainly in corn. CENTA aims to
build a demand for sorghum that would justify entry of the private industry.

Other countries want to take advantage of CENTA's experience with the seed
trade and of its improved germ plasm, but CENTA has something of a pro-
prietary attitude and wants to recuperate the investment it has made in
genetic research. I don't know the size of the investment, but my obser-
vations lead me to the hypothesis that the returns to El Salvador on its
investment in R and D would compare favorably with the 40 percent plus
average reported for other R and D experiences.


_ _ ___I _~____~


Extension Operations

Extension is a structured, formalistic program, depending heavily on the
demonstration technique. Demonstration kits are designed by research and
checked out in some way with extension. Extension has two persons who
prepare and distribute the kits. They are the only non-administrative
agricultural personnel in the headquarters staff.

Extension formally enrolls cooperators for the crop season and has forms
for collecting data on the farm, extension inputs, and crop performance.
Records are not complete, however, and I could discover no system for
analyzing the data. The technology is selected by researchers. The planning
office gives each agency a quota based on land area crop by crop. Extension
works with small farmers, many of them tenants, but must enroll larger
farmers in order to meet acreage quotas.

The demonstration plot is used both for method and result, and farmers
Visit it as the extensionist plants, weeds, fertilizes, and harvests.
Meetings, on-farm visits and tours are popular methods, and some agencies
use the circular letter to announce events. Mass media are used little
if at all.

Extensionists are concerned chiefly with structured tasks with the enrolled
clients. They manifest little concern for the mass of farm families, and
their knowledge of farmers other than clients appears to be incomplete.

Traditional though it is in many ways, extension also is undergoing change.
The service has been regionalized. This shifts the status of the national
project leader-specialists more toward the specialist role, but leaving
them a little uncertain of their role. Extensionists have changed from
specialists working in only one crop to generalists who concentrate in an
area and handle many crops, plus some organizational tasks. Some have
complained about the change but still say that extension is a good career.

Problem the agency workers feel most sharply is the lack of supporting
materials--signs for demonstrations, office equipment and supplies, visual
aids materials, and supplies. All male workers have wheels, none of the
female workers do. Gasoline is rationed, and repairs are slow.

It took a specific question to elicit them, but there were some complaints
on technical support from headquarters, especially from the former specialists
who now operate as generalists. In one agency the extensionists had not
attended the so-called annual field days put on by the research service or
the training courses provided by CENTA and CENCAP.

The.home economics program, having no research backstop, deals largely in
intermediate technology, in contrast to the modern technology of the


_ __ _ _~__


agricultural program. There are only three national level specialists
(project leaders before regionalization), in nutrition, small industries,
and home improvement, plus the former leader who still acts in a general
leadership capacity, although authority has transferred to the regional

In addition to the three specialties listed above, home economics also
works in family planning and clothing and sewing. Nutrition includes
work in home gardens and production of rabbits, chickens, and ducks. This
project reports a new and growing interest in the soybean, especially for
milk. Home improvement emphasizes the building of partitions for privacy
in the campesino house along with home beautification. Small industries
teach the making of articles from native materials for sale.

Home economics works through homemaker clubs which meet weekly. The home
agent makes home visits in the community in the morning and meets with
the club in the afternoon. With some 100 agents, the home ec programs
work with about 9,000 families a year.

Extension works with 4-C clubs (corazon, cabeza, conocimientos, and
capacidades), but I dit not find out much about their operation.


CENTA seems to be improving both internal and external linkages, but needs
to do more.

Internally, it has strengthened linkages among the persons and departments
of the research division through the interdisciplinary groups. That division
in turn depends on both the seed and extension divisions for delivery of
its product to the farmer. Extension-research linkages have been strengthened
with the presence of an extension person on the interdisciplinary group and
with the initiation in 1976 of the annual field days for extension. Technical
support of extension still seems weak. There is no one person in either
the extension or research service who has the responsibility to keep agents
up to date in technology. The two demonstration plot workers apparently
perform no technical support role except as the demonstration plots them-
selves inform the extension workers. Personnel of the field crops department
do have a requirement to produce a publication each year.

Extension is linked with the seed division by its efforts in seed distribution.

External linkages are numerous and vary in degree of formality and probably

CENTA depends on linkages with others to provide inputs--funds, technology
support, personnel, training, and information about the farmer. Much of this

_ I_____ _~~__ _____~ ___

analysis must be made on inference. Judging from the flight of personnel
caused by low salaries and from El Salvador's relatively low investment
in technology innovation in spite of CENTA's performance, linkage with
funding sources needs improvement.

Linkages with international centers seem to be good, especially those sited
in Latin America. One way to link to world technology is through training,
and within the last few years 46 of CENTA personnel have studied in 15
foreign countries. These linkages were probably developed on the initiatives
of the others, not by CENTA. The University of Florida linkage probably
is less effective than would be expected since only one person on the team
is a regular university staff member. Study in the U.S. is less than
expected, largely because of language problems, which may be an impediment
to linkage in general.

The National School of Agriculture (ENA) provides personnel at sub-university
level. The Faculty of Agronomy provides B.S. level people. ENA is located
on CENTA's central experiment station, contiguous to the new physical
facilities CENTA will occupy soon. Relationships with these two manpower
sources were not analyzed.

Knowledge and understanding of the farmer as an input has been provided on
an informal basis up until now and has not been considered a critical input.
Specific efforts are now underway to provide this input by linkages directly
with the small farmer system.

CENTA has developed a reasonable number of linkages for product delivery
that appear to be productive. However, there is opportunity for improvement,
chiefly through structuring some of the current informal relationships.

Some of the most productive linkages are with the private seed trade which
apparently is working well for that technology which can be packaged in
a seed. CENTA sells some seed directly through extension and cooperatives,
at subsidized prices. CENTA also links to the seed industry by field and
laboratory inspection services that help maintain quality.

Other laboratory facilities provide for linkages with various elements of
the economy. Chemical residues constitute a major problem for El Salvador,
especially in export, and one section of the Department of Parasitology is
working on that problem. Another section contributes to quality control of
inputs by performing the laboratory work on which another agency of govern-
ment bases its regulatory actions. Anyone with a complaint can use this
service, either directly or through the extension service. Finally, CENTA
laboratories provide soil analysis to anyone who requests it.

The Department of Parasitology links directly to agriculture through its
trouble shooting service connected with disease or insect outbreaks. This



leads to on-farm experimentation in localized areas of the country,
which tends to keep the agency in touch with the farmers.

Through extension agencies, CENTA has linkages with field operations of
other national agencies. The most important of these is with the Development
Bank which depends on extension to organize groups for credit guarantee and
to provide technical assistance. Extension also works closely with the
community development service, FOCCO, which provides 40 percent of the
funds for community projects. Extension has informal, ad hoc relationships
with various other agencies, both from the Ministry of Agriculture and other
ministries. Linkages at other eschelons were not noted.

There is no formal, structured activity within CENTA to transfer technology
at the wholesale level to the field or retail entities. There is frequent
informal contact, and many of the employees of the other agencies are
former CENTA people, which facilitates contact.

Linkages have also been developed with CENCAP (Centro de Capacitacion)
in activities to provide technical training to others as well as to CENTA

Personnel, the Human Resource

One of the most curious aspects of CENTA is the human resource aspect.
CENTA has done a creditable job. The evidence is clear. Yet this performance
has been achieved with what appears to be a relatively low level of investment
in the human resource. The Department of Field Crops and Horticulture, for
example, has only one person with a graduate degree and has roughly two
persons with a less than B.S. training for each one with B.S.-level training.
Since early 1974 only 12 people have been sent for study for more than
12 months and some of them are working on a B.S. degree. Few from CENTA
have been sent for graduate work under the Florida contract, chiefly because
of the problem of learning English, but also because their absence would
upset the CENTA programs. There is no indication that over the last few
years there has been in-country training that would compensate this
seemingly low personnel training.

In the meantime, CENTA with an AID loan,has made a substantial investment
in a complete new physical facility which will soon be occupied.

This is a puzzling phenomenon. According to the conventional wisdom the
CENTA level of performance is not to be expected with so few graduate
degrees. One needs to search for the explanation. It is likely that CENTA
could invest profitably in the human resource, but it very well may be
that.this investment should not follow the conventional M.S.-Ph.D. pattern
and that much of it could be done nationally.


There is a discouraging element in the El Salvador manpower situation,
important not only to CENTA but.to all other agencies. The Faculty of
Agronomy has placed additional requirements for the Ingeniero Agronomo
(B.S.) degree that is almost sure to choke down the already small stream
of graduates. Raising salaries to bid for this scarce item is not an
adequate solution.


CENTA has two kinds of budget problems. The allocation to its total
program is low, and the salaries it is allowed to pay aresometimes low.
It lost many of its personnel in 1976 but received salary adjustment
authority and funds for 1977 which stemmed the personnel flight somewhat.

The 1975 estimated figure for the gross value of agricultural production
comes to 0975 million for those commodities in which CENTA has the technolo-
gical responsibility. CENTA's 1977 budget is less than one percent of that
figure, 08.5 million. The R and D allocation is less than half a percent,
about 03.7 million. The best guideline we have indicates that two percent
of the gross value of agricultural product could reasonably be spent on
R and D, a level which would allow a quadrupling of the budget.

The Multiple Cropping Project

Multiple Cropping (MC) is listed in the 1977 operational plan as a program
but is handled as a project. An interdisciplinary group attaches to it,
although it places almost all of its emphasis on crops and closely related
disciplines. I could discover no evidence that MC has had a significant
impact in the country, Perhaps there has not been time enough, but my
expectations were that there would be some specific sites in which it had
caught on. ,None was found.

Ignoring the time factor--which may be the main non-impact explanation--
my study was oriented to identifying the "trouble." For the most part,
the study turned up conflicting data, regarding farm size, farm size of
CENTA clientele, rural unemployment, and MC labor requirements. My conclusions
result from attempts to reconcile conflicting data and from inference and
at this stage are useful more as hypotheses than as definitive assertions.

My hypotheses are;

1. That MC has not yet been made relevant to specific groups of small

2. Major obstacle in making MC relevant is the style of operation that
emphasizes (a) commodities and (b) modern biological and chemical technology

surrounding those commodities at the expense of giving adequate attention
to the farmer and to economic technology (and perhaps other social factors).

In a sense this may be saying that the MC project has exposed basic
weaknesses in the CENTA operational style that is oriented by modern
technology, relies on purchased inputs, and is restricted to individual
commodities, even though it has served reasonably well. It needs to be
pointed out that steps already taken (the study of cases and the employment
of an economist on the University of Florida contract) may well lead to a
solution of the problem.

MC in CENTA is very tightly defined. The term applies only to two crops
being produced on the land at the same time. Beans or sorghum planted in
mature corn is not considered MC. Further, now that CENTA has settled
on a few basic crop combinations, other combinations are not really considered
MC. There are two sets of combinations. The basic grain set is corn and
beans the first cycle (of the rainy season) and pole beans (growing on corn
stalks) and either sorghum or sweet potato the second cycle. Cowpeas are
substituted for beans below 300 meters. The perishable set consist of
corn and beans, with radishes optional, the first cycle, and cucumbers or
tomatoes (growing on corn stalk trellises) in the second, with cabbage in
the dry season if there is irrigation. One CENTA staffer stated that the 7
system is set and all that was needed was to find better varieties__tofit.
it. And indeed most conversation is around varieties and species already
listed. Labor requirements are noted, but the only way they have entered
R and D efforts is through the decision to test herbicides to reduce labor
needs. The orientation is still largely by commodity (modified to combination
of commodities) and still largely to modern technology.

In the field, two problems with the MC project were voiced. In the
Ahuachapan agency, it was said that the farms are too big for the farmers
< to be interested in more intensive land use. In Suchitoto, there was
complaint that weeds cannot be kept out of the double rowed corn and that
the mixture of species made it difficult to use herbicides.

The sector analysis study being done by tbe-USAID mission finds that of
the 270,000 farms in the country, 190,000 of them have less than two
hectares. O--these-small farms there is considerably less than ten percent
expansion potential in land under crops. The analysis shows a 46 percent
underemployment in El Salvador, the highest rate in Latin America. The
study states, "The non-intensive nature of the commodity mix on the smallest
farms (under three ha) in El Salvador is probably the most important income
and employment constraint. Almost half of the value of production on farms
under three ha comes from non-intensive annual crops while on 5-10 ha farms
it drops to one-third."

~_ __. __


The central rationale for work in MC, or any intensive production system,
is to enable farmers to sell(jor4 labor. R.and D efforts must develop
the technology that will enable-farmers to economize on the use of their
~- _relatively scarce resource (land, and for many, capital) by using more of V
their relatively abundant resource (labor). Technologies that require
increased use of purchased inputs are essentially substituting one scarce
resource for another.


(or Alternatives for Consideration)

These alternatives for consideration will be presented under two headings--
short run and long run, depending on when the impacts will be felt, not
necessarily when actions should be taken. All need immediate consideration.

Short-run alternatives and opportunities

1. The multiple cropping program needs immediate attention, and the need
is urgent. Two actions have been identified for the project, but which can
have beneficial impacts on CENTA as a whole. In fact, it would be useful
to evaluate any alternative for the project in terms of itp__impact_pnCENTA.
The project can be used as a means to test ideas for CENTA-wide application
and for general strengthening of CENTA.

a. One action needed is to re-design the project so that it is oriented
in large p~at.t he farmer, his needs, his current technology, and s -
resource endowment rather flan simply to the criteria of good crops
technology. This action will require greater reliance--alcultural
economists and perhaps a strengthening of that department. The input needed
from agricultural economists can be roughly described as working with other
specialists in accomplishing the following tasks.

Delineation of functionally homogeneous farming areas.

This determines the range (or area of relevance) of a farming system
or a combination of crop enterprises along with associated technologies.

-- Analysis of the farmers' relative sour. endowment and of
his current technological and managerial practices in relation
to his resources.

Identification and analysis of alternatives to current practices
in technology and management.



b. The other action needed is to provide a'Center extension service
(as contrasted to a Field extension service) withih-CENTA, and the multiple
cropping project could be used as a testing ground.- Center extension is
that function performed by the-Extension Specialist in-the U.S. system.
The function consists of synthesizing information, preparing materials for
technical support to field extension workers, training field extension
workers, and counselling field extension workers on special problems. It
is a service to field workers (extension workers and other agency field
personnel), a sort of "wholesaling" of technology to the field worker
who in turn "retails" to the farmer. Center extension, from its work in
synthesizing materials and its contacts with field workers and farmers,
can also play a major role in the identification of problems for R and D.
If this function is not provided for in the structure, field workers will
not be provided adequate technical support beyond what individuals will
provide each according to his own criteria.

If assigned to a single project, a Center extension worker may not be
employed full time and thus could do some R and D work. The U.F. project
could add a person in this area, or the project could provide a consultant
on a continuing basis who would work with CENTA personnel and U.F. personnel
to install the function.

There is nothing to be gained by the adding of U.F. personnel in extension
to help out in some way with current CENTA extension activities.

The first action listed is more urgently needed in terms of the MC project
alone. Unless the technology fits the farmer, no amount of extension will
achieve significant adoption. In terms of CENTA in the long run, both
actions have a high payoff potential.

Neither of these actions is costly. Either could be achieved by a modest
realignment of CENTA personnel and by consultant services available through
the U.F. contract.

2. The mission and CENTA need to address the problem of material support
to the field extension workers. A few hundred dollars per agency in
equipment and supplies could increase productivity of the extension worker
substantially. At the same time, the problem of delays in vehicle maintenance
and repair need to be addressed. Training of drivers in preventive main-,
tenance and an improved inventory of parts could help keep the extension
worker mobile and help him get more miles out of his gasoline ration.

1 3. CENTA needs to give some attention to its enabling linkaggg with those
entities that grant authority and allocate resources. With its achievement
record, it merits easier access to resources and more authority to compensate
personnel than it now enjoys.


_ I___~

Long-Term alternatives and opportunities

1. CENTA needs a long range development strategy. Given El Salvador's
population pressure on its land CENTA's demonstrated performance, the
potential returns to R and D in agriculture, and the country's current low
expenditure on R and D, El Salvador's national purpose would be well served
by a substantial expansion in CENTA.

Such expansion needs to be orderly and strategically. It cannot be rapid
because of the manpower constraint, the supply of which is highly inelastic.
A growth rate of ten percent a year for the next 15 to 20 years seems
reasonable. This would allow for a doubling every seven years, and a CENTA
eight times its current size by the year 2,000 is probably reasonable.
Certainly one twice its size in 1985 and four times its current size by 1992
is reasonable, certainly not oversized.

A series of five-year plans updated every two to three years would be useful.

Special attention needs to be called to two factors in such a plan. One
deals with livestock and one with manpower development.

In El Salvador, R and D attention to livestock development has been very
small, dating back less than five years. Two facts need to be faced. One
is that livestock is a major component of the country's farm income, and
the second is-that livestock is important in the small farm sector. Its
contribution to the small farm has been realized with no R and D input.
If the small farmer is better understood (as suggested above) and if R and D
attention were to be paid livestock, livestock could make a substantially
greater contribution to the small farm economy. The strategy and plans
need to face the issue of whether livestock R and D will remain in CENTA-
or be transferred to another R and D program. If attention to the small
farm as a unit replaces the single commodity as CENTA's orientation,
livestock should stay with CENTA.

Manpower perhaps is the most critical issue facing CENTA at present Any
significant expansion in its operation in the short run is almost certainly
precluded by the small stock and output of ingeniero agronomoes. Even
current operations are threatened. This factor has implications throughout
the sector, but yet cannot be solved in the sector, since another ministry
has responsibility for much of the training.

Another important aspect in human resource development is post-graduate
training, either for agronomoes or for ingeniero agronomoes. CENTA's
experience is evidence (if not proof) that an agency can be effective
with minimum reliance on personnel trained through the M.S. and Ph.D.
This experience cannot be ignored. However, there may be a middle ground
between virtually no postgraduate training and the costly MS-PhD syndrome.
SIn-service training in selected technology for the agronomo (less than B.S)
who plays and will play an important role in CENTA's operations also
needs attention.


- -- --- ---- --

A joint El Salvador-United States commission (longer lasting than a team)
could be organized to develop and monitor the long-range strategy and
plan. Such a commission was uqed by Frank Parker in the 1950's with what
appear two decades later to be excellent results in India.

Development of this strategy and long-range plan would not be costly in
terms of money. It would require a considerable input of time from well-
qualified (and thus busy) personnel of CENTA and other government agencies.
There would be no serious problem in mobilizing U.S. talent for the

Persons contacted:

USAID: Philip Schwab, Mission Director
Dwight Steen, Rural Development Officer
William.Ogilvie, "
Ivan Escobar, "
David Quarles, "

University of
Florida: John Bieber, Agronomist
Tom Walker, Agricultural Economist

Peace Corps: Michael Michaud
James Monachino

CENTA: Felix Cristales, Director General
Mario Apontes, Ass't. Dir. Gen.
Jose Guerra, Chief, Extension Division
Roberto Vega Lara, Chief, Research Division
Enrique Abel Rubio, Chief, Seed Technology Division
Teresa de Lara, National Specialist, Home Economics Extension
,Mauricio Manzana, Chief, Extension Regional Operations
Humberto Arce and staff, Extension agency, Atiquizaya
Romeo Gonzales and staff, Ahuachapan
Jose Rogelio Ruano and staff, Sucitoto
Francisco Somoza, Demonstration plot specialist
Hernan Amaya, Chief, Department of Soils
Romeo Lopaz, Agronomy
Carlos Mario Garcia, Bean agronomist
Antonio Dias, Chief, Department of Parasitology
Jose Salazar, Chief, Department of Soils
Francisco Recimos, Chief, Department of Animal Science
Cesar Aristides Solano, Scientist, Department of Animal Science
Mauricio Arevalo, Zone chief, Extension Service
Luis Ramos, Zone Supervisor, Extension Service


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