The gap between attainable yields of different crops and the yields smallholder farmers actually achieve can be as high as 90%. Reasons for these gaps pertain to general technological challenges, the translation of research into both adapted technologies and farmers’ local knowledge, policies and business environments that are not conducive to intensification and climate change. To enhance food security, it is essential to understand the relative importance of these reasons. How can cutting-edge research, context-sensitive technology development, empowering farmers to fine-tune their systems and innovative training contribute to close yield gaps in a sustainable way?
To analyze in selected cases the reasons for yield gaps and, together with farmers, develop innovations to close these gaps in a sustainable manner.
• In partner country: Reasons for yield gaps are understood and quantified. An analytical framework is developed and tested. Strategies for closing yield gaps are identified and selected options for sustainable intensification are tested. Dissemination of knowledge and lessons learnt in other countries contribute to close yield gaps and thereby enhance food security.
• In Switzerland: Reducing the yield gap is crucial to improve the food security in sub-Saharan Africa. Food insecurity is well-known to be a major cause of migration.
Partner countries: 4–6 case countries, e.g. Benin, Burkina Faso, Chad, Ethiopia, Great Lakes, Mozambique, Tanzania
Research Partners: IITA, ICRISAT, CIAT, national and regional research institutes, universities
Cost: CHF 4 Mio
Duration: 6 years