Mentoring rural youth to make agriculture attractive



The more I read on youth mentoring, especially YPARD’s mentoring programmes, the more I got inspired and tempted to mentor young people. My visit to Nikki Chaudhary’s dairy farm in 2016, to witness first-hand her start-up in action, as a finalist of GFAR’s Youth Agripreneurs Project (YAP), was a pivotal moment in understanding the value of these mentoring programs.

I remained restless, until I could launch myself a Rural Youth Mentoring-2017 programme at my own institute – ICAR- Indian Veterinary Research Institute – on 28th  February, 2017.

Under Mentoring Rural Youth-2017 programme, one hundred rural youth are being mentored by the Agricultural scientists of ICAR- Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Izatnagar, a Partner in GFAR; specialists of Krishi Vigyan Kendra; and by the agripreneurs trained and promoted by the ICAR-Indian Veterinary Research Institute.

The youth, aged 17 to 25 years, are currently registered with the institute…

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Sparking the Creativity of Youth at #ICYA



The International Conference for Youth in Agriculture (ICYA) held from 27 to 30 April in Leuven Belgium was created in order to give space to young, bright and internationally active people to interact, discuss, learn and project their ideas into practical solutions that could inspire students all over the world to take action and adopt those ideas and projects in their local communities. We wanted everyone to see and experience the amazing potential of young people’s energy and passion once you give them the spark of creation.

The outcome of this conference is part and parcel of the mission of IAAS: to bring together people from different countries, with different mentalities and mindsets, different cultural/social backgrounds so as to allow for expression of multiple and unique perspectives on the same issue. When a specific problem is put “on the table” an incredibly productive and creative debate can quickly get “on…

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The multiple benefits of livestock are in focus this week as experts meet in Ethiopia

ILRI news

Fritz Schneider, GASL chair

Fritz Schneider, chair of the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock (photo credit: ILRI/Apollo Habtamu).

More than 250 livestock experts from over 50 countries are exploring ways of ensuring that the long-term benefits of livestock contribute to sustainable development. They’re participating in the 7th Multi-Stakeholder Partnership meeting of the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock (GASL), in Ethiopia, this week.

The 8–12 May 2017 meeting was officially opened by His Excellency Professor Fekadu Beyene, Ethiopia’s minister for livestock and fisheries, on Monday in the capital, Addis Ababa.

‘This meeting will enable us to share the multiple benefits we’re deriving from sustainable livestock initiatives, including those supported by the Ethiopia Livestock Master Plan (2015) and Growth and Transformation Plan Two (GTP 2)’, said Beyene.

The minister highlighted the Ethiopian government’s ambitious steps to efficiently utilize its vast livestock resources and make the sector a driver of the transformation of the country’s…

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CGIAR Portfolio 2017-2022 – Transforming global agriculture and food systems



CGIAR has launched its new research portfolio, comprised of 11 Research Programs and 3 Platforms, that represents the second generation of CGIAR’s multidimensional work streams.

The CGIAR Portfolio 2017-2022 aims to reducing rural poverty, improve food and nutrition security and improve natural resources and ecosystem services. It maintains momentum in selected areas while placing renewed emphasis on key issues such as: integrated agri-food systems based approaches, nutrition and health, climate change, soils and degraded land, global stewardship of genetic resources, and big data and ICT.

The overall strategic direction for the portfolio is based on the CGIAR Strategy and Results Framework and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and has been developed and informed by the former Fund Council, CGIAR System Council, Science Council, Research Centers and other stakeholders.

CGIAR’s research will focus on delivering synergy across programs, integration for achieving development impact at scale and providing scientific…

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The disruption starts now: new big data program promises to shake up agriculture



A new multimillion-dollar initiative plans to disrupt food production across the developing world, with the aim of making it more productive, efficient and resilient – all through the power of information.

The CGIAR Platform for Big Data in Agriculture is jointly led by the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), with tech giants IBM and Amazon among a list of high-level partners.

It brings together thousands of experts, from crop scientists to computer programmers to collect, process and analyze vast amounts of data on crops, weather, soils and more, with the aim of producing some of the most precise and reliable recommendations for farmers, governments and policymakers in developing countries.

The USD$30 million initiative will be officially launched today at the Information and Communications Technology for Development (ICT4D) conference in Hyderabad, India.


“It’s time for smallholder farmers to stop looking at the…

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Why is sustainability not yet second nature?


This week marks the launch of the new CGIAR research portfolio. Izabella Koziell, Program Director, lays out the ambitions of the CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE).

fortifier-plant-launch-03 The first commercial co-composting plant in West Africa was launched on May 11, 2017. It produces an effective, safe fertilizer made from fecal sludge and organic waste. Photo courtesy: IWMI.

We face a familiar challenge

Global food demand is growing and is projected to, by 2050, increase by at least 60% above 2006 levels. In response to this demand, new technologies and increased inputs have contributed to farm system intensification, leading to significant yield gains and advances in food security. However, growing evidence shows that intensification is at the expense of multiple other social and environmental concerns.

Today, agriculture is a major contributor to the ongoing degradation of the environment. More than 70% of global freshwater is used for food…

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People, the planet, and sustainable livestock: Livestock live talk at ILRI on18 January 2013

ILRI Clippings

On Friday, 18 January 2013, Jeroen Dijkman, an internationally recognized authority on agricultural innovation systems and rural development practice and planning, will give a ‘livestock live talk’ seminar on ‘People, the planet, and sustainable livestock’, at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), in Nairobi, Kenya.

View the event announcement:

He was previously the director of an Enabling Innovation Theme of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), and the senior officer of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Pro-Poor Livestock Policy Initiative, which was credited with influencing global thinking on policy and institutional change.

Currently, Dijkman works for the Livestock Information, Sector Analysis and Policy Branch of the FAO, from where he coordinates the Learning, Innovation and Knowledge (LINK) program, which explores and manages agricultural innovation processes, programs and policies in developing countries ( He also coordinates the Global Agenda of Action for Sustainable Livestock Sector Development, a…

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