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Canadian International Food Security Research Fund
Scaling up agricultural innovations in Kenya

Funding: CA$4.3 million                                            Duration: March 2011 to August 2014

Project Number: 106510

The challenge

Farming in Kenya’s arid regions is particularly challenging because of low and erratic rainfall, land and water depletion, and the resulting declines in agricultural productivity. Climate change is also having negative impacts on households. Unfortunately, effective technologies developed by decades of agricultural research have not been adopted by farmers.

Policy efforts have failed to relieve hunger and malnutrition. Innovative farming and marketing strategies are needed to deal with the challenges of growing crops on arid lands.

The research

This project, supported by IDRC and DFATD through the Canadian International Food Security Research Fund (CIFSRF), aims to develop innovative strategies for accelerating largescale adoption and scaling up of durable farming systems in three regions of Kenya.

Researchers will investigate the numerous causes of low agricultural productivity. They will also identify opportunities for linking farmers to markets and for influencing the formulation
and implementation of sound policies for dryland agriculture. They will then test and develop farming practices that are much more appropriate and environmentally sound for dry areas. Doing so will increase production and consumption of healthy local foods and dramatically improve farmers’ livelihoods.

Expected outcomes
  • Identification, introduction, and adoption of more appropriate and environmentally sound farming practices for arid areas
  • Enhanced use of traditional local crops
  • Increased consumption of healthy local foods
  • Improved income-earning opportunities for farmers
Lead Researchers

Dr. Lutta Muhammad, Kenya Agricultural Research Institute, Kenya
Dr. Gordon Hickey, McGill University, Canada

For more information on this project, contact Pascal Sanginga, Senior Program Specialist, Nairobi, Kenya (psanginga@idrc.ca) or Kevin Tiessen, Senior Program Specialist, Ottawa, Canada (ktiessen@idrc.ca).
The Canadian International Food Security Research Fund (CIFSRF) is a program of Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada provided through Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada (DFATD).

International Development Research Centre
PO Box 8500 Ottawa ON Canada K1G 3H9
Phone +1 613 236 6163 | Fax +1 613 236 7293

cifsrf@idrc.ca | www.idrc.ca/cifsrf

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Scaling up agricultural innovations in Kenya
IDRC funds researchers in the developing world so they can build healthier, more prosperous societies
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