Inventory of farming systems research...
 Overcoming constraints to livestock...
 FSSP support base broadens
 Institutional innovations in national...
 Farming systems calendar

Title: Farming Systems Support Project newsletter
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00071908/00002
 Material Information
Title: Farming Systems Support Project newsletter
Alternate Title: FSSP newsletter
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Farming Systems Support Project
University of Florida -- Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
Publisher: The Project
Place of Publication: Gainesville Fla
Publication Date: 1983-
Frequency: quarterly
Subject: Agriculture -- Periodicals -- Developing countries   ( lcsh )
Agriculture -- International cooperation -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
periodical   ( marcgt )
Dates or Sequential Designation: Vol. 1, no. 1 (spring 1983)-
Issuing Body: Issued by: Farming Systems Support Project, which is administered by: Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida.
General Note: Title from caption.
Funding: Electronic resources created as part of a prototype UF Institutional Repository and Faculty Papers project by the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00071908
Volume ID: VID00002
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 - 10387162
lccn - sn 84011294

Table of Contents
    Inventory of farming systems research and extension projects - Annual farming systems symposium
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Overcoming constraints to livestock development in Subsaharan Africa
        Page 3
    FSSP support base broadens
        Page 4
    Institutional innovations in national agricultural research: On-farm research within IDIAP, Panama
        Page 5
    Farming systems calendar
        Page 6
Full Text


Farming Systems Support Project Newsletter

Inventory of Farming Systems Research

and Extension Projects

The concept of Farming Systems
Research and Development has
suddenly achieved great currency in
the international development
community. Many projects are being
formulated under the FSR rubric and
others are being reformulated to fit the
new standards. As a result, there is no
clear listing of what projects are cur-
rently underway or what their scope is.
The FSSP is attempting to remedy the
situation by undertaking an inventory
of projects world-wide that call

themselves farming systems projects.
While FSSP is focused on projects
related to USAID missions abroad, the
inventory is not limited to such
projects. But identifying them all is a
difficult-and probably impossible-
task. We need help! If you are involved
in -or know of -a Farming Systems
Research/Extension project, please
send us the following information:
name of principal investigator; country;
address; brief description of project,if

We will then follow up the initial project
identification with a more complete
questionnaire. The results will be
available to all interested. The initial
results will be presented at the Farming
Systems Symposium at Kansas State
University at the end of October.
Please send inventory information to:

Dr. Cornelia Butler Flora
International Agricultural Programs
Kansas State University
Manhattan, Kansas 66506 USA

Annual Farming Systems Symposium -

Call for Papers

The role of animals in farming sys-
tems production, products, and pro-
cess- is the theme for the Third Annual
Farming Systems Symposium to be held
at Kansas State University in Manhattan,
Kansas, October 31 through November
2, 1983. Papers and presentations of
case studies are being solicited that
touch on that theme or other aspects of
farming systems research and develop-
The first morning will be devoted to
an overview of the concepts and
methodology of farming systems re-
search and extension. The on-going in-
ventory of current farming systems pro-
jects will be presented and discussed.
The conference will officially begin
with a keynote session on the Current
State of the Arts in Farming Systems
Research and Development, focusing
on the kind of problems that emerge in
"second generation" farming systems
projects. Difficulties of including ani-

mals in farming systems projects will be
a major part of the presentation. Gordon
Banta, IDRC, Singapore, is tentatively
scheduled to make that address. The
banquet speaker Tuesday evening is
Jocelyn Albert, USAID, speaking on
Women, Animals and Farming Systems.
Papers are being sought on the fol-
lowing topics, although those selected
will not be limited to these topics only:
linking animals to household and crops;
animals and the household; animals
and the cropping system; farming sys-
tems and the market: the role of ani-
mals; animals and food products; ani-
mals and artesanry products; disease
and the farming system; confined vs.
non-confined animal raising within the
farming system; communication bet-
ween crop, animal and social scientists;
shifting households and animal sys-
tems; measurement problems in includ-
ing animals; livestock and animal nutri-
tion; human nutrition and farming sys-

teams; extension and livestock from the
FSR/E approach; links to extension in
FSR livestock-related research; animal
raising and family division of labor;
intra-household allocation measures;
factors of production and project im-
pacts; and methodology for on-farm
While limited funding for travel of
presenters is available through the
Kansas State University Strengthening
Grant and the Farming Systems Support
Project, it is expected that AID missions
and home universities will provide
most of the travel and per diem funding.
Please send an abstract of your
proposed paper to:

Dr. Cornelia Butler Flora
International Agricultural Programs
Kansas State University
Manhattan, Kansas 66506 USA

The Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) membership
includes Trinidad, Tobago, Jamaica, Barbados, Guyana, Antigua, Barbuda, Belize,
Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts, Nevis, St. Lucia, Montserrat and St. Vincent.


CARDI, the Caribbean Agricultural
Research and Development Institute,
initiated a farming systems project sup-
ported by grant funds from USAID in
1978 and now expects to continue the
project into a second phase with the
help of a new grant. The FSSP fielded
a team headed by Dr. Robert Hart, of
Winrock International, and which in-
cluded Dr. W.W. McPherson and Dr.
R.K. Waugh of the University of Florida.
The objective of the team was to work
closely with personnel of CARDI in the
design of a sequel to the first phase
project. The team also had the benefit
of briefing information from other uni-
versities that had been active in the
Caribbean area such as the University
of Missouri, the University of Illinois
and Michigan State University.
The output of the team was, firstly, a

report and technical proposal that
would furnish the basis for the more
formal project paper of AID, and, sec-
ondly, participation in the preparation
of a first draft of the project paper.
The report, entitled Proposal for
CARDI/USAID Eastern Caribbean Farm-
ing Systems Research and Development
Project consists of 10 chapters:

* Role of CARDI in the Agricultural
Sector of the Eastern Caribbean
Project Overview
CARDI's Farming Systems
Research and Development
Analysis of Constraints
and Opportunities
Research Priorities

\ \

_-. t .its Z a, Antigua/Barbuda
St. K I tts/o revls"
->S Montserrat1& f i
Jamaica t Dominica
St. Lucia a
St. Vincent Q aBarbados
1 a Tobago
S GuTrinidad
'^ IGuyana

* Technical Assistance, Training and
Professional Development
Organization and Management
Implementation Plan
Mr. Calixte George was CARDI's
principal participant in the development
of the report with the FSSP committee.
Mr. George, project leader for the
phase 1 activity, assembled several of
the agronomists, an economist and an
anthropologist of CARDI in St. Lucia to
meet with the FSSP group to participate
in the development of the report. Also
representatives of WINBAN (bananas),
Regional Extension and AID met with
the group in St. Lucia.
Later the committee, accompanied
byTGSVge, metwith Mr. Jle BergaSse,
Executive Director, and Dr. Sam Paras-
ram at the CARDI Headquarters on the
campus of the University of the West
Indies at St. Augustine in Trinidad to
discuss organization and management.
A principal objective of the FSSP
committee was to aid CARDI in writing
a CARDI report to be used as the re-
source and idea document on which
the project paper is to be based, with
the objective of assuring that the second
phase project will meet the objectives
of CARDI, the member states and the
needs of the Eastern Caribbean.
CARDI has made a strong commit-
ment to decentralize its research and
mount a client-oriented program at the
country level in six of the Eastern Carib-
bean Islands. In this respect CARDI was
successful in the first phase project.
CARDI has identified specific needs
in areas of adequate support for man-
agement, cash flow, and financing and
is striving to correct these needs. A
second phase project therefore has as
objectives institutional development to
give management the help that it needs
in accounting and other support person-
nel, to strengthen the decentralization
action, institutionalize farming systems
research and contribute to adequate
food supplies for the area.
Discussions with AID personnel in
Barbados has left the impression that
the report is a sound basis for elaborat-
ing a project designed for the local in-
stitutional and ecological conditions
because of the direct participation by
CARDI personnel. N

Upcoming Conference

Overcoming Constraints to Livestock

Development in Subsaharan Africa

lr I S


"Overcoming Constraints to
Livestock Development in Subsaharan
Africa" isthetitleof a conferenceto be
held in Gainesville, Florida, August
3-6. The dual purpose of the confer-
ence, co-sponsored by the Center for
African Studies and the Institute of Food
and Agricultural Sciences, University of
Florida, is to analyze the continuum of
ecological, biological, and
socioeconomic conditions presently
preventing the expansion of livestock
production and to arrive at a consensus
on development priorities and policy
The livestock sectors of the countries
of Subsaharan Africa have recorded
dismal performances during the 1970's
and 1980's while populations have
grown at unprecedented rates. These
trends portend severe meat shortages in
the near future unless positive changes
in existing production-marketing
systems are implemented. For realistic
development options to be cogently
evaluated, the producer's situation
needs to be considered in a systems
context. This conference will provide
an opportunity to consider the dynamic
interrelationships of the constraining

A workshop format will be followed,
with short summaries of prepared
papers providing the impetus for
round-table discussions. A wide range
of topics will be considered, from the
ecological and sociological problems
faced in the development of pastoral
production systems, to the role of cattle
and small stock in higher-potential
mixed farming systems, to animal
health, breeding, marketing, and
pricing issues. The discussion will be
given regional breadth as well, with the
Sahel, West Africa, and East Africa all
receiving attention.

Among participants who will be
contributing papers are Edgar Ariza-
Nino (University of Michigan), Joan S.
Atherton ( U.S. Agency for International
Development), A. John DeBoer
(Winrock International), Phylo
Evangelou (University of Florida), Peter
D. Little (Institute for Development
Anthropology), Robert McDowell
(Cornell University), William Moulton
(East Dover, Vermont), David J. Pratt
(Surrey, England), TjaartW. Schillhorn
-van-Veen (Michigan State University),
Harold K. Schneider (Indiana Univer-
sity), Kenneth Shapiro (University of

Wisconsin), Ahmed E. Sidahmed (U.S.
Meat Animal Research Center), James
R. Simpson (University of Florida),
Albert S. Sollod (Tufts University), J.
Dirck Stryker (Tufts University),
Gregory Sullivan (Auburn University),
Thurston F. Teele (Chemonics,
International Consulting Division), and
John C.M. Trail and R. Trevor Wilson
(International Livestock Centre for
Africa). The papers will comprise the
'chapters of a book entitled Livestock
Development in Subsaharan Africa:
Constraints, Prospects, Policy, which
will be published by Westview Press,
December, 1983.
Persons wishing additional informa-
tion about the conference should write
Dr. James R. Simpson, Food and
Resource Economics Department,
McCarty Hall, University of Florida,
Gainesville, FL 32611, cable:
CENTROP, telex: 808579, or phone
(904) 392-1854. Individuals who are
interested in examining African
livestock development problems from a
systems perspective are encouraged to
consider attending what is expected to
be an exciting and stimulating
gathering. E

FSSP Support
Support for the FSSP through a
Memorandum of Agreement (MOA)
between the FSSP and universities or
institutions is strengthening the
project and its undertakings. The
concept behind the MOA is to organize
these support entities into an informal
yet cohesive group to provide both
short-term training and technical
assistance in farming systems projects.
The MOA then, represents a defined
commitment to respond to project
needs. It establishes the framework to
provide a program for accomplishing
project objectives.
To date there have been MOA's
signed between the FSSP and Colorado
State University, Iowa State University,
Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Kansas
State University, Development
Alternatives, Inc., The Research
Triangle Institute and Winrock
International Institute. At least five
other MOA's are pending signatures
and additional agreements are
expected before the year's end.
The flexibility of the MOA's is
evident in specific FSSP activities
already underway. These include
arrangements with Kansas State
University for administration and
coordination of a documentation n
center for the FSSP, in cooperation with
AID. Kansas State is also coordinating
the annual meetings of the Farming
Systems Support Project in conjuction
with a symposium on farming systems.
Other activities include those of
Colorado State University, Iowa State
University and VPI providing leadership
to various task groups within the FSSP,
and Winrock Institute leading a
technical assistance effort with CARDI
in the Eastern Caribbean. In addition, a

Caption: Colorado State University
cements its farming systems relation-
ship with the FSSP with the signing of
a Memorandum of Agreement. Acting
on behalf of their respective Institu-
tions are (l-r): H.L. Popenoe, Director
of International Programs, University
of Florida; C.O. Andrew, Director of
Farming Systems Support Project; and
J. Meiman, Director of International
Programs, Colorado State University.

Base Broadens

number of universities are active in
training efforts for the Farming Systems
Support Project, such as Michigan State
University, the University of Florida
and Virginia Polytechnic Institute.
Generally, the MOA calls for support
entities to join other cooperating
institutions in expanding their capacity
for farming systems assistance. Under
the agreement each institution
identifies an FSSP administrative
contact, program leader, and program
associates with training and experience
in farming systems research and
development. The MOA also identifies
specific program interests and
institutional capabilities along with a
plan for further strengthening goals
associated with farming systems work.
The MOA is a commitment to
support the FSSP, AID Missions and
developing country institutions by
providing technical assistance, training
and networking to practitioners,
managers and administrators of farming
systems programs. It is a commitment
to advancing the state-of-the-arts in
farming systems research and develop-
ment with emphasis on management,
organization and extension
methodologies for the generation,
evaluation and transfer of technology to
At the same time the MOA obligates

the FSSP to facilitate and strengthen the
support enitites' institutional capacity
in farming systems through training,
field experience, counsel on overall
programs, and participation in task
force endeavors. The FSSP also agrees
to include the support entities in
networking with regions, countries and
other support entities, and to provide
opportunities to participate in technical
assistance. Under the MOA, the FSSP
can provide funding for specified tasks
to implement the emerging FSSP effort.
As the FSSP support base broadens,
the project is strengthened both
collectively and separately by the
participating institutions. In turn, the
capacity of the project grows. This
provides coordination and leadership
ability in broad program areas of both
production sciences and socio-
economic sciences. This translates into
a technical assistance capacity in crop
and livestock systems, family house-
hold and farming systems, agro-ecolog-
ical/farming systems relationships, and
farming systems methodology. Under
the FSSP, the support entities also
provide a capacity for coordination and
leadership in the organization,
management and orientation of farming
systems projects along with related
policy, institutional and other macro
concerns. a

A Review by Peter Hildebrand

"Institutional Innovations in National Agricultural Research:
On-Farm Research within IDI A P, Panama"by Juan Carlos Martinez and Jose Roman Arauz

This extremely valuable publication
is one of the first to document the
history of a farming systems project
from planning through adoption. In
particular, it is valuable because it also
includes a section on cost efficiency.
This latter item has been debated by
many donors, yet it is difficultto verify
because of the nature of the information
gathered in the usual course of a
farming systems project.
Both an informal survey and a formal
survey were used to gather preliminary
data from the Caisan area of western
Panama. The Caisan area covers
10,000 hectares and has some 300
farmers. Two recommendation
domains initially were defined and one
of the two was chosen for concentrated
efforts because of the limited resources
available to the program staff. Partially
because of the CIMMYT mandate,
emphasis was given to maize produc-
tion in the farming system of the area.
The technological components
incorporated in the first round of trials
were weed control, spatial arrangement
and density, fertilizer requirements
(nitrogen and phosphorus), and
lodging. The last component was
handled separately from the others in a
special maize improvement program to
reduce plant height.
The first exploratory trials utilized an
incompletely randomized block design
with a factoral arrangement of 2" and
without replications. Results showed a
marked yield advantage for herbicide
(H), and planting distribution-density
(D) practices but little nitrogen or
phosphorus effect. The HxD interaction
was significant at the 10 percent level.
Economic analysis indicated a high
(700 percent) marginal rate of return for
the combined H and D alternative, so
they were considered together for the
second round of trials.
Following the first round of trials, (as
well as the second and third rounds),
the results were integrated with the
results of the surveys. "The data were
reviewed, new hypotheses formulated,
and new lines of research charted, both
for the on-farm research program and
for experiment station research. Where

appropriate, recommendations for
farmers were made as well as those for
agricultural policy." This procedure is
a critical component of the FSR/E
In the second research cycle, a zero
tillage system was incorporated as an
alternative to conventional tillage as a
cost saving rather than a yield
increasing technology. The zero tillage
system was also seen as a means of
reducing erosion, a problem identified
both by the researchers and the farmers.
During the third cycle, three
verification trials were conducted in the
area. Though this is a very small
number, the results tended to verify the
earlier results that zero tillage,
chemical weed control with Gesaprim
80, no fertilization and 50,000 plants
per hectare planted in rows was the
superior technology to use,
"The Caisan research program was
guided by the principle that the best
guarantee for the adoption of recom-
mended technologies was to assure that
farmer circumstances were taken into
account from the outset, leading to
recommendations which were
appropriate to those circumstances."
"The technology transfer process
followed in the project involved farmer
field days at experiment and demonstra-
tion sites to discuss the alternative
technologies involved. With these
elements, and the degree of communi-
cation which existed between farmers
in the area, their response exceeded
initial expectations. Furthermore,
farmers themselves played an active
role in the process of technology
generation. For example, cooperating
farmers modified the Gramoxone
container so that it could be used as an
applicator in the field. Similar
farmer-originated adaptations occurred
in zero tillage. Some farmers (particu-
larly larger landholders) found it
difficult to find the labor required by
the manual chopping of old stands, the
initial step of the zero tillage alternative.
In consultation with the research team,
they used a light harrowing pass instead
of hand chopping to cut back the weeds
and crop residues, thus arriving at a

minimum tillage system."
"Following only three cycles of
research activity, the Caisan project
was evaluated by IDIAP. The evaluation
included an adoption survey related to
the technologies generated by the
project. Sixty to 80 percent of the
farmers representing like amounts of a
the maize area had adopted the seed
control and planting recommendations
and used no fertilizer. Over 40 percent
of the farmers with 23 percent of the
maize area had adopted zero or
minimum tillage. "The high rate of
adoption of recommended practices
among Caisan farmers, particularly
considering that the research project
had only been in operation for four
years (three cycles), stands as testimony
to the validity of the research methodol-
ogy which led in such a short time to
the development of appropriate
technology for target farmers the
final judges of the usefu I ness of produc-
tion-oriented research."
In fewer than four years, the social
rate of return was much greater than the
amount invested by IDIAP. Even
assuming no further adoption after
1982, the rate of return was 188 percent
according to the IDIAP evaluation.
Area-specific, on-farm research
activities have gone through considera-
ble expansion in Panama since 1978
when the Caisan program was begun
with only two national researchers. At
present they include five priority areas
in crops, involving 24 national
researchers and three priority areas in
livestock with 21 researchers, U
"Institutional innovations in national
agricultural research: On-farm research
within IDIAP, Panama" by Juan Carlos
Martinez and Jose Roman Arauz
Published by CIMMYT, Londres 40,
Apdo. Postal 6-641, Mexico 6, D.F.
Also available in Spanish: Depar-
tamento de Publicaciones de la
Direcci6n de Transferencia de
Tecnologig, Instituto de Investigaci6n
Agropecuaria de Panama (IDIAP);
apartado 6-4391, El Dorado, PanamA,
Republic de Panama.


Aug. 16-19 Farming Systems Research and Extension Short Course
Michigan State University
East Lansing, Michigan 48824
Aug. 29- Farming Systems Research and Extension Short Course
Sept. 2 Farming Systems Support Project
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State Univ.
Blacksburg, Va. 24061
Sept. 5-16 "Planning Management and Evaluation of On-Farm Experi-
ments from a Farming Systems Perspective"
Second Regional Training Workshop
University of Zimbabwe
Farming Systems Research Program CIMMYT
Mount Pleasant, Harare, Zimbabwe
Sept. 20-23 "Farmer Participation in Development and Evaluation of
Agricultural Technology"
ICRISAT West African Programme Workshop in collaboration
with SAFGRAD and IRAT Ouagadougou, Upper Volta
Sept. 26- Farming Systems Research and Extension Short Course
Oct. 7 Farming Systems Support Project
Introduction to FSSP and FSR&D
Ouagadougou, Upper Volta
Sept. 28- Agricultural Research Planning and Management Short Course
Nov. 7 Overseas Development Group
University of EastAnglia
Norwich, United Kingdom
Oct. 31- Kansas State Farming Systems Symposium
Nov. 2 Kansas State University
International Agricultural Programs
Manhattan, Kansas 66505
Nov. 3-4 Farming Systems Support Project Annual Meetings
Advisory Council/Program Leaders
Administrative Coordinators, Task Groups
Kansas State University
Manhattan, Kansas 66505

Editor's note: Please send dates for con-
ferences, meetings, workshops, short
courses and other related farming system
activities to:
3028 McCarty Hall
Gainesville, Florida 32611

The FSSP newsletter is published
quarterly by the Farming Systems
Support Project (FSSP), which is
funded by AID Contract No. DAN-40
99-A-00-2083-00 and administered by
the Institute of Food and Agricultural
Sciences (IFAS), University of Florida,
Gainesville, Fla. 32611. IFAS is an
Equal Employment Opportunity -
Affirmative Action Employer.

The FSSP Newsletter encourages
the contribution of stories, pictures
and ideas, which should be sent to
FSSP Editor, 3028 McCarty Hall, Uni-
versity of Florida, Gainesville, FL

PHOTO CREDITS: page 3, Phylo
Evangelou; page 4, IFAS Editorial.
1, Cornelia Flora; page 2, Robert W.
Waugh; page 3, Phylo Evangelou; page
5, Peter Hildebrand.

This public document was promulgated
at a cost of $1,041.48, or 23 cents per
copy, to provide information on farm-
ing systems research, extension and
program administration.

3028 McCarty Hall
Gainesville, Florida 32611

University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs