IFDC and CORAF Release Updated Online Tool to Promote Use of Innovative Technologies for West African Farmers to Increase Agricultural Productivity and Profits

  • The updated Fertilizer and Seed Recommendations Map for West Africa (FeSeRWAM) and agro-input packages (AIPs) will be launched virtually on August 25, 2022.
  • The initial version launched on September 22, 2020, has been updated to introduce new functionalities and improve user experience.
  • The FeSeRWAM and AIP tool delivers important site-specific technical information on recommended improved seeds, appropriate fertilizer, and good agricultural practices to promote sustainable increases in agricultural production and productivity.
  • The initiative is funded by USAID through the Feed the Future EnGRAIS, and PAIRED projects implemented by IFDC and CORAF, respectively.

August 22, 2022 – Two key regional Feed the Future projects will launch the second version of an innovative online tool designed to help agricultural value chain actors, especially smallholder farmers, access critical information on agricultural inputs. The Fertilizer and Seed Recommendations Map for West Africa (https://www.feserwam.org) is a georeferenced web-based platform that provides recommendations to increase the demand for and use of appropriate fertilizers, improved seed varieties, and good agricultural practices to increase agricultural productivity in West Africa.

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) provided funding for this initiative through the Feed the Future Enhancing Growth through Regional Agricultural Input Systems (EnGRAIS) Project for West Africa and the Partnership for Agricultural Research, Education, and Development (PAIRED), implemented by the International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC) and the West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development (CORAF), respectively.

“With this innovative tool, key stakeholders, particularly extension agents and agro-input dealers, will be able to provide appropriate recommendations on major crops and varieties with high adoption potential that can help improve agricultural production, enhance farmers’ incomes, and contribute to the food and nutrition security of vulnerable households across West Africa,” said Dr. Oumou Camara, Regional Director, IFDC North and West Africa.

“A tool such as the FeSeRWAM has come at the right time to address many challenges our farmers face in their effort to sustainably increase agricultural yields, based on appropriate recommendations and support. Stakeholders need to embrace this tool and work to encourage its adoption across the region,” said Dr. Emmanuel Njukwe, CORAF Director of Research and Innovation.

The FeSeRWAM platform currently delivers over 900 AIPs on 27 crops and 771 seed varieties for 13 countries, enabling more than 600,000 farmers in West Africa and Chad to increase their agricultural productivity and improve their well-being.

Through a collaborative process that occurred between October 2018 and July 2020, the original platform’s development involved more than 350 strategic stakeholders from various national and regional organizations.

Based on feedback from users, the projects and partners began updating the platform in 2021 to improve user experience, interface, and data and address new developments in terms of high-potential varieties and fertilizer products in various countries.

FeSeRWAM is designed and targeted to benefit: 

  • Agro-dealers and agricultural extension agents to determine AIPs suitable for their specific agroecological zone (AEZ), which can be used as backstopping and training material for farmers.
  • Policy- and decision-makers to select AIPs for subsidy programs. 
  • Researchers to adapt one country’s AIP to the specific AEZ of another country.
  • Fertilizer blenders to use nutrient requirements to select appropriate raw materials for blending site-specific fertilizers.
  • Farmers to use new technologies to increase agricultural yields.

When properly utilized, the tool will help increase agricultural productivity and production in a sustainable manner to improve food security in West Africa and Chad. 

An online launch event will take place on August 25, 2022.

About USAID: USAID is an independent agency that provides economic, development, and humanitarian assistance worldwide in support of the foreign policy goals of the United States. For more, visit: www.usaid.gov.

About IFDC: An independent non-profit organization, IFDC combines innovative research, market systems development, and strategic partnerships to identify and scale sustainable soil solutions for improved food security and livelihoods around the world. For more, visit: ifdc.org.

About CORAF: CORAF is an international non-profit organization working to enhance prosperity, food, and nutrition security in West and Central Africa. For more, visit: www.coraf.org.