HarvestPlus Reaching End Users Orange Fleshed Sweetpotato Project
The Reaching End Users Orange Fleshed Sweet Potato project disseminated orange-fleshed sweet potato (OFSP) in two countries, Uganda and Mozambique, where vitamin A deficiency is of public health significance. During the course of the fieldwork from 2006 to 2009, about 10,000 farm households in Uganda and 12,000 households in Mozambique were targeted.
Key Project Information
The Reaching End Users Orange Fleshed Sweet Potato project disseminated orange-fleshed sweet potato (OFSP) in two countries, Uganda and Mozambique, where vitamin A deficiency is of public health significance. During the course of the fieldwork from 2006 to 2009, about 10,000 farm households in Uganda and 12,000 households in Mozambique were targeted. This was the first time that a biofortified crop with a visibly different trait (color) had been deployed on such a large scale. Through pre-intervention (baseline) and post-intervention (endline) surveys, the project assessed OFSP adoption rates and whether adoption resulted in improved vitamin A intakes among young children and their mothers.
In both countries, two dissemination strategies were implemented: a more intensive and costly Model One, as compared with a ”lighter” Model Two. Both models had four primary components:
- Developing an OFSP vine distribution system including subsidized vines to households,
- providing extension to men and women in farm households on OFSP production practices and marketing opportunities,
- providing of nutritional knowledge, in particular about vitamin A deficiency, to women in these same households, and
- developing markets for OFSP roots and processed products made from OFSP roots.
Components (ii) and (iii) were accomplished through the use of a pyramidal structure of extensionist trainers working for nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and promoters trained by these extensionists who, in turn, instructed fellow members of pre-existing farmers’ groups or community organizations.
To accomplish this required coordination between several institutions across three types of activities, as follows:
- Implementation was carried out by NGOs responsible for dissemination of OFSP in target communities:
- In Uganda, in-country NGOs VEDCO and FADEP were contracted and trained by four Ugandan specialists based at ASARECA.
- In Mozambique, two collaborating international NGOs—World Vision and Helen Keller International.
- An Operations Research group planned dissemination strategies worked closely with the NGOs to modify specific implementation activities, and undertook background research during implementation in both countries:
- International Potato Center (CIP) was responsible for vine systems and farm extension related to production of OFSP.
- HarvestPlus was responsible for demand creation and provision of nutritional (or information.
- The Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich was responsible for marketing and product development.
- An Impact Evaluation team conducted baseline and endline surveys in both countries, led by the Poverty, Health, and Nutrition Division at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
By comparing Model One and Model Two households with control households and reflecting on contrasting conditions between Uganda and Mozambique, the impact and cost-effectiveness of the dissemination strategies in both countries were evaluated.
NAMES OF TEAM MEMBERS:
Mary Arimond, Anna-Marie Ball, Aurélie Béchoff, Diane Bosch, Howarth Bouis, Alan de Brauw, Claire Coote, Richard Dove, Patrick Eozenou, Dan Gilligan, Christine Hotz, Neha Kumar, Ricardo Labarta, Cornelia Loechl, Jan Low, Sylvia Magezi, Jaquelino Massingue, J.V. Meenakshi, Mourad Moursi, Charles Musoke, Sam Namanda, Harriet Nsubuga, Julius Okwadi, Keith Tomlins, Martin Wamaniala, and Andrew Westby
International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Natural Resources Institute (NRI), University of Greenwich
Helen Keller International (HKI)
World Vision Mozambique
International Potato Centre (CIP)
Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa (ASARECA) and Regional Potato and Sweet Potato Improvement Network in Eastern and Central Africa (PRAPACE), Uganda