New Project to Strengthen the Resilience of Farmers to Biological Threats

  • The BIORISKS project aims to help farmers anticipate and manage biological risks
  • It is funded by the European Union and its implementation will be ensured by CORAF and the WAVE Program
  • Scheduled for a period of five years, it will be launched during a two-day virtual workshop, starting October 06, 2020.

A project called « Anticipate and manage biological risks to strengthen farmers’ resilience to climate change in West and Central Africa – BIORISKS » will be implemented to help farmers in West and Central Africa to curb the negative impact of pests and other diseases on commodities.

The 5-year project is funded by the European Union and will be implemented by CORAF and the WAVE Program (Central and West African Virus Epidemiology for food security), of Félix Houphouët-Boigny University of Abidjan.

The launch of this project, which will certainly play a crucial role in the food and nutritional security of the sub-region, will be carried out on October 6, 2020 from 9 a.m., Universal Time, during a 2-day virtual workshop.

The workshop will bring together employees from the WAVE Program and CORAF Executive Secretariat, researchers from WAVE Program hubs, researchers from the Roots and Tubers Regional Center of Excellence, the representative of BIMAF (Biorisk Management Facility). Representatives of the Delegation of the European Union Commission in Ivory Coast, representatives of Félix Houphouët-Boigny University are invited to attend.

“The BIORISKS project intends to focus on cassava mosaic disease (CMD), cassava brown streak disease (CBSD), fall armyworm and fruit flies, ”said Dr Abdou Tenkouano, Executive Director of CORAF.

“Faced with an endlessly galloping population therefore requiring more sustained agricultural productivity in order to guarantee nutrition, these pests and diseases create daunting biological threats that seriously compromise food security and the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) No. 2 – zero hunger— and indirectly, several other SDGs such as SDG # 1 – no poverty – and SDG # 3 – good health and well-being”, stated Prof. Justin Pita, Executive Director of WAVE.

Thus, in the long term, the BIORISKS project aims to contribute to poverty reduction and the improvement of food and nutritional security in ten West and Central African countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Ghana, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone and Togo. This objective is particularly aimed at improving the productivity of farmers and stabilizing the yields and incomes of the main staple and fruit crops in the target countries.