transforming African Food Systems
The Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) – is a major continent-wide initiative designed to boost agricultural productivity across the continent by rapidly delivering proven technologies to millions of farmers.
TAAT aims to double crop, livestock, and fish productivity by expanding access to productivity-increasing technologies to more than 40 million smallholder farmers across Africa by 2025. TAAT seeks to generate an additional 120 million metric tons (MT). TAAT is a key flagship programme of the Bank’s Feed Africa strategy (2016 – 2025).
TAAT brings together a consortium of partners to deploy proven technologies to millions of farmers with a focus on:
- eliminating extreme poverty;
- ending hunger and malnutrition;
- turning Africa into a net food exporter, and
- positioning Africa at the top of agricultural value chains
The developmental objective of TAAT is to rapidly expand smallholder farmers’ access to high-yielding agricultural technologies that improve their food production, assure food security and raise rural incomes. This is done through three principal mechanisms;
Creating an enabling environment for technology adoption by farmers.
Facilitating effective delivery of these technologies to farmers through a structured Regional Technology Delivery Infrastructure.
Raising agricultural production and productivity by identifying and deploying strategic interventions that include improved crop varieties, animal breeds, and fingerlings.
This strategy is implicit in the important roles of sound policies, empowering women and youth, strengthening extension systems, and engaging with the private sector.
Extensive partnership ecosystem
TAAT partners with the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) Centres, the world’s largest global agricultural innovation network and provider of agricultural technologies. Under TAAT, the CGIAR and other Advanced Agricultural Research Institutes work in consortium with the National Agricultural Research and Extension Systems (NARES), Ministries of Agriculture, the private sector, farmers’ cooperatives and not-for-profit organisations involved in agricultural development to deploy agricultural innovations at scale.
These institutions come together with specific objectives within selected agricultural value chains and form Commodity Technology Delivery Compacts (referred to simply as “Compacts”) for technology delivery to millions of agricultural producers.
The Commodity Compacts correspond to the following value chains: rice, wheat, maize, sorghum & millet, beans, cassava, sweet potatoes, fish, small livestock, vegetables, and soybeans. They are complemented by Enabler Compacts that address cross-cutting themes: soil fertility management, water management, capacity building, policy support, youth in agribusiness, and fall armyworm management.
Since 2018, TAAT and partners have accelerated technology deployment along priority commodity value chains. The efforts have addressed the challenges of low yields by tackling transversal problems that have plagued the agricultural sector for decades.
Some of the outstanding achievements of the program in selected value chains and countries include:
- In Sudan, TAAT financed the provision of 65,000 metric tons of heat tolerant wheat varieties. Sudanese farmers grew wheat on 317,000 hectares, and in just two years, Sudan reduced its wheat imports by 50%.
- In Ethiopia, TAAT-supported heat tolerant wheat varieties have allowed the country to cultivate 675,000 hectares and reduced its wheat imports by 80% in just two years.
- TAAT has delivered NERICA rice varieties to 3.2 million households across Africa. Advanced Rice Varieties for Africa (ARICA), ORYLUX (aromatic), and SAHEL (adapted to the stress conditions of the Sahel ecology) and hybrids have also been delivered on a large scale.
- The programme has introduced and disseminated at scale 17 climate-smart rice varieties that yield 4-7 MT/Ha and hybrids that have the potential of 10 MT/Ha in 14 countries
- TAAT delivered water-efficient maize to 5.6 million households in Eastern Africa, an area hit by severe droughts. In Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Malawi, a TAAT-led collaboration with 15 private sector seed companies reached 600,000 farmers with 6,000 MT of drought-tolerant maize varieties treated with specialised dual-purpose pesticides with demonstrated capabilities to control Fall Armyworm.
- TAAT has upscaled cutting-edge innovations to increase production and productivity for fish value chain actors, fish protein consumption, and enhance resource and environmental sustainability.
- Over 23,000 fish farmers across Africa have been trained on game-changing aquaculture technologies, with over 159 million fingerlings of catfish and tilapia of improved brood stock produced and distributed.
- Over 127 million fingerlings were raised and released to 37,355 producers, resulting in production gains of over 60,000 MT worth about $188 million.
- TAAT procured a seed treatment, Fortenza Duo, to combat the invasive pest, Fall Armyworm (FAW). In Zambia and Zimbabwe, TAAT deployed 6,598 metric tonnes of certified maize seed treated with Fortenza Duo (4,943 metric tonnes in Zambia and 1,655 metric tonnes in Zimbabwe).
- The Fortenza Duo (FD) treated seed was distributed through the government inputs programs and reached 660,000 beneficiaries – 494,300 in Zambia and 165,500 in Zimbabwe. A report of an impact study commissioned by a UK consultant entomologist found a 1.5MT/Ha yield differential in farmers that used the FD-treated seeds compared to those that did not.
- TAAT has committed to delivering high-quality seeds, breeds, and fingerlings to beneficiaries. The TAAT ecosystem has supported the dissemination of seeds to 19 million of 40 million smallholder farmers targeted.
- The programme has provided 11M farmers in 28 countries with climate-smart seeds, fertilisers, and technical support–helping African food production increase by more than 12M metric tonnes.
- The TAAT Clearinghouse has a strategic role of linking technologies to country loans to accelerate the deployment of TAAT technologies at scale to national partners through bank-funded development projects. For the last two years, a total of 112 TAAT-proven technologies were embedded into ten agricultural projects implemented in 19 countries.
TAAT’s beneficiaries are rural communities and key benefits include:
- Increased agricultural productivity and diversification, leading to improved food and nutrition security
- Job creation through expanded commercialisation and industrialisation,
- Improved socioeconomic status of farmers, including women and youth due to higher incomes,
- Reduced vulnerabilities to market price fluctuations leading to better-organised markets,
- Improved soil, land and water management practices
- Increased resilience to climate variability and stress through the deployment of Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) technologies and innovations.
TAAT’s CLARION CALL
- The momentum behind the agricultural transformation in Africa is at an all-time high. The promotion and adoption of improved, climate-smart and high-yielding varieties has ushered in a new era of agricultural productivity intended to put the continent on a pathway to food system resilience.
- TAAT is accelerating the momentum in addressing transversal issues in African agriculture, improving soil fertility, discovering the untapped potential for improved water management, coordinating and advocating agricultural research initiatives, providing the necessary policy support, attracting African youth in agribusiness, and helping farmers respond to transboundary plant pests and diseases such as Fall Armyworm.
- Our technologies and deployment models are creating a pathway forward by strengthening value chain delivery infrastructures ultimately intended to make farming cost-efficient and effective for African farmers.
- TAAT is scaling up to support country and private sector engagement, technology brokerage, policy formulation, nutrition security and unhindered access to proven technologies. TAAT is paying attention to cross-cutting and strategic areas like gender, fragility and climate change while intensifying efforts to help countries mobilise resources to build resilience in their food systems.
- TAAT works with governments, research and academic institutions, the private sector and civil society to increase skills and capacity in African agriculture.
- TAAT will continue to prioritise inclusion and sustainability in all our work and build cross-cutting and strategic issues into our operations to help drive agricultural transformation and achieve a food and nutrition-secure Africa.
Join us on this path to feeding Africa!