ISLAMABAD: A media tour was organised by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) where journalists and media officials were briefed about the agriculture based projects under the USAID – funded Agricultural Innovation Program (AIP). AIP aims to enhance nutritional security and improve livelihood in Pakistan. This project builds partnerships between public research, farmers, and the private sector. AIP has three main activities, which do research on cereals and cereal systems (wheat, maize, and rice), livestock, vegetables and perennial horticulture. CIMMYT is the primary implementing partner taking overall responsibility for AIP and providing direct oversight of the agronomy, wheat, and maize commissioned projects while the four international partners, International Livestock Research Institute, University of California – Davis, the World Vegetable Centre, and the International Rice Research Institute lead on commissioned projects in livestock, tree fruits, vegetables, and rice.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has partnered with the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) and 11 Pakistani institutions on a project to demonstrate and disseminate best practices and technologies in watershed rehabilitation and irrigation improvement to help rural Pakistani farmers. The $3.3 million project, begun in 2011, strengthens the capacity of Pakistani agricultural institutions to show farmers ways to better capture and store water, reduce the loss of water or soil, and more efficiently water crops.
United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has implemented a project by International Center for Agricultural Research in Dry Area (ICARDA) on “Improving Soil Fertility and Soil Health in Pakistan through demonstration and dissemination of the best management Practice for Farmers” in Pakistan. This project collaborates with nine government institutions involved in agriculture, research, education and extension and one non-government organization (NGO).
USAID/USDA and ICARDA work in partnership across the provinces of Punjab, Sindh, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with two provincial agricultural research institutes, three Pakistani universities, and three institutes of the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC), a provincial agricultural extension department, the Pakistan Council of Research on Water Resources (PCRWR), and a Pakistani agricultural NGO. Through this project, technical experts from USDA visit Pakistan to provide trainings and technical consultations to Pakistani partners, who then conduct demonstration and dissemination activities with local farmers aiming to improve their livelihoods and make their lives better.