Podcaster 15


N2Africa Podcaster 15

July and August 2012

Title Summary Newsletter item #
Julieta Mario and her mother Carlota Sabonete – Leading N2Africa Farmers in Mozambique

Julieta Mario comes from a long line of good women farmers, and manages her farm in Magige Village, Gurure Province, together with her mother Carlota Sabonete – still an active farmer.

From left to right: Four of Julieta’s children, her mother Carlota, Anne Turner, Julieta and Nelito Rosario of N2Africa Team-Mozambique



For many of us – both in southern Africa and in Europe - July and August are the time of year to escape from work and email, though for our colleagues in East and West Africa cropping seasons are in full swing. It has been a busy period of interaction with both the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Howard G Buffet Foundation as we go through reporting rounds. The narrative report that covers the main activities over the past year is available on the N2Africa website if you would like to read it. N2Africa is moving into the final year of the first four-year phase of funding, while at the same time we are ramping up activities to reach even larger numbers of farmers than in the past seasons.

We look forward to meeting many of you at the forthcoming conference on Integrated Soil Fertility Management ISFM conference (www.isfmafrica2012.org) that will take place between 22-26 October 2012. N2Africa partners will present a number of papers and posters at this conference which includes the biennial meeting of the African Association of Biological Nitrogen Fixation (AABNF) and promises to be an excellent meeting and discussion place.

Ken Giller

Monkey Business

We would appreciate some feedback from you, the readers of the Podcaster; about what goes well, what goes not so well and what we could do better in our communication. To keep you better informed about the ‘Putting nitrogen fixation to work for smallholder farmers in Africa’.

You will receive soon an email from the online "Survey Monkey". It will not take much time to respond to the questions and your responses really will help our understanding. Thank you.

Alastair Simmons, N2Africa Communication, Knowledge and Project Management Officer

Latest Exposure

We recently submitted, (on time!), a progress report to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. As it said in the introduction, the report is, "the product of the countless hours spent by Field Liaison Officers, Agronomists, Rhizobiologists, Research Assistants and students in African fields, farms and laboratories: and a testament to the support of our numerous in country partners and smallholder farmers with which we are all privileged to work." This was our month 30 report.

We have written separately about our first progress in Liberia, Sierra Leone and North Kivu and the Ruzizi plains in DRC to the Howard G. Buffet Foundation. Here we are able to extend the work and learning of the project, with their support.

Both reports will be available through our website soon.

Our thanks goes to everyone who has been interested in and supported N2Africa around the globe.

Alastair Simmons

Malawi’s President Joyce Banda meets N2Africa

N2Africa-Malawi participated in the launch of USAID-funded project "Integrating Nutrition in Value Chains" (INCV) on 12 July 2012, an event which also marked the 100th day in office for the new president, Her Excellency Joyce Banda.

Photo: President Banda, together with the USA Ambassador to Malawi, viewing products made from soybean by the Malawi N2Africa Farm Liaison Officer, Gloria Kasongo

Role model farmer shows a way for adoption of legume technologies in Western Kenya

Irene Ngochi is a farmer from Emakhunje Village in the densely populated Emukhaya district of Western Kenya. Farm sizes in the district range from as small as 0.05 ha to 1 ha, with the majority (70%) of households owning 0.20 ha. Irene’s household owns an average farm of 0.25 ha. At the age of 50 years, Irene has developed a very positive attitude on planting soybean and climbing beans.....

Photo: Irene points to climbing bean trailing on one of the trees in her farm


N2Africa Project Offers Hope For Sierra Leone Farmers

Something beyond the traditional farming experience in Sierra Leone is being introduced to let farmers benefit from grain legume crops. The common practice upon which the farming of these crops had been centred lacked maximum productivity and did not focus on nutritional and economic values. With the introduction of the N2Africa Project, however, those setbacks and disadvantages will soon become an experience of the past.


Ilse de Jager introducing a new discipline into the N2Africa project

Ilse de Jager has recently joined the N2Africa project team at Wageningen University to conduct a literature study on the nutritional benefits of legume consumption at household level.

Photo: Ilse eating mungbean based meal together with the Indian schoolchildren in the TELFUN project in India, carrying out her masters thesis



TechnoServe Edition 9 of the Boletim Soja

The Soya team from TechnoServeInc sent us their Boletim Soja no. 9 in Portugese.

Conference announcements

Announcement of 2 potentially interesting legume related conferences.

Link to New Agriculturist: Perspective Ken Giller

See this link for a short ‘Perspective’ piece on how our thinking about approaches to helping farmers choose options within N2Africa can be more broadly applied to other approaches.


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