SCIENCE CITY OF MUÑOZ－ Nineteen trainees from Sub-saharan Africa completed a two-month training course on rice seed production and extension methods to help strengthen rice production in Africa toward food and livelihood security in the region, March 6 – April 28.
The training course aimed to enhance the participants’ knowledge and skills on rice production using the PalayCheck System as the platform focusing on the production of quality rice seeds. PalayCheck, which was developed by PhilRice, is an integrated crop management system for rice.
The participants were also exposed to different extension methods that can be applied in the promotion and use of quality rice seeds among farmers.
The African trainees, composed of researchers, agricultural officers, extension workers, and seed inspectors, were from Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Uganda. They were joined by 10 Filipino agricultural extension workers from top rice-producing provinces in the Philippines.
“We are indebted to the instructors who invested significant amount of time, energy, and effort in giving us both theoretical and practical training on quality rice seed production through the PalayCheck System, agroecosystem analysis, and post-harvest management practices, just to mention a few,” said Patience Maaldu, one of the participants from Ghana.
“We would implement all the knowledge and skills we gained during the training when we return to our respective countries,” he added.
Problems on food security in Africa bridged the International Rice Research Institute and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to forge partnership in implementing the three-year project dubbed as Extension capacity development for rice food security in Africa in which the said training course is included.
The said specialized course, which will be conducted for three batches, is the second phase of the project.
“We are pleased to share our expertise and experiences on rice seed production and extension methods with the Sub-saharan countries through this training course to help boost their rice industry,” said Ms. Lea Abaoag, head of PhilRice’s technology management and services division and overall coordinator of the project.
The project is funded by JICA and managed by IRRI in partnership with PhilRice and members of the Global Rice Science Partnership.