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Achievements, Challenges and Lessons in Enhancing Productivity and Production of Major Tropical Legumes for sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia

Monyo, E.S., Ndjeunga, J., Upadhyaya, H., Boukar, O., Mukankusi, C., Gaur, P., Sameer Kumar, C.V., Agrama, H., Rubyogo, J., Ganga Rao, N.V.P.R., Varshney, R.ORCID: 0000-0002-4562-9131, Gowda, C.L.L., Kumara Charyulu, D., Arega, A., Katungi, E., Siambi, M., Okori, P., Desmae, H., Beebe, S., Myer, M., Kamara, A., Boahen, S. and Ajeigbe, H. (2014) Achievements, Challenges and Lessons in Enhancing Productivity and Production of Major Tropical Legumes for sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. In: 6th International Food Legume Research Conference/7th International Conference on Legume Genetics and Genomics, 7 - 11 July 2014, TCU Place Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.


Tropical Legumes II (TL-II) seeks to improve the livelihoods of 60 million smallholder farmers (SHF) in 15 countries through enhanced productivity of chickpeas, common beans, cowpeas, groundnut, pigeonpeas and soybeans. It is implemented by ICRISAT, CIAT and IITA in collaboration with NARS of Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and India. The project is designed to help SHF overcome constraints such as drought, pests, diseases and lack of seed of improved varieties. TL-II is expected to enhance productivity by at least 20% through increased adoption covering 30% of legume area, strengthen national breeding programs and generate at least $1.3 billion in added value as a result. Significant achievements have been made. Active breeding programs are now in place in all 15 countries. 129 new varieties have been released and are fast replacing old ruling varieties. 37 national partners were trained to MSc and PhD. More than 258,000 tons improved seed was produced between 2007-2013, enough to reach 51.6 million farmers in 5kg packs. Innovative approaches to target the poor - especially women such as small seed packs, seed loans and decentralized production schemes were promoted. Since 2007, improved varieties disseminated have been adopted on 2,007,889 ha and generated US$513 million from project funding and nearly $2 billion from project and partners investments. In effect, for each dollar invested, the project generates $11 with direct project investment or $39 with partnership's investment. These successes and associated challenges will be discussed.

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