Family Farming Program (FFP)
In 2010, almost 64 percent of the population of Tajikistan lived below the poverty line of $2 per person a day. There are many reasons, including a historically state-controlled economy, five-year civil war, rural unemployment, dependence on imported food, and an agricultural strategy focused on cotton. Recent economic and social shocks have adversely affected the agriculture sector, reducing land use and productivity. Inadequate smallholder land size, unresolved land reform issues, skewed agricultural policies and strategies, water management obstacles, and nonsustainable use of the country’s natural resources are significant challenges. Compared with other Central Asian countries, Tajikistan has the highest number of female-headed households, which are disproportionately affected by poverty and discrimination. The U.S. Agency for International Development Family Farming Program (FFP) is a four-year effort to improve food security in Tajikistan by increasing the volume of agricultural production, boosting the income of food insecure households to make food more accessible, and raising the standard of household nutrition. At the community level, Village Extension Agents serve as activity monitors and liaisons to reach out and train across all FFP activities. Programming focuses on initiatives that have the most immediate yet sustainable impact and feature broad community inclusion, especially for woman-headed households and young women and men.
- Work with household (subsistence) farms and small commercial (individual and family dekhan) farms, implementing interventions along the agricultural production chain from input supply through marketing.
- Work with national policy issues as the need for specific policy reforms is demonstrated by its work in the villages.
- Assist in the reform of the national system of agricultural education.
- To provide models for farmers to replicate, created 175 field crop demonstration plots, 90 in Kulob and 85 in Qabodiyon, during the first project year.
- Introduced local farmers to superior varieties of maize, beans, fodder beet, and watermelon seeds from foreign seed companies.
- Developed, printed, and distributed technology brochures to assist in training.
- Nutrition staff visited 175 demonstration plots and provided suggestions on improving production and processing agricultural crops. Field agents also provided demonstration training on preserving food and will publish a recipe book for beneficiaries.
Client: U.S. Agency for International Development