China And Africa Expand Cooperation On Cassava Production

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News in brief:
– China and African agricultural experts plan to expand new cassava varieties and advanced farming techniques across Africa to increase cultivation areas to over 500,000 hectares.
- The collaboration expects to raise cassava yields to over 17 tonnes per hectare, enhancing food security and reducing poverty.

Chinese and African agricultural experts have unveiled a plan to significantly expand the cultivation of new cassava varieties and advanced farming techniques across Africa.

This initiative aims to boost cassava production, enhance food security, and alleviate poverty in the region.

At the recently concluded Second Forum on China-Africa Cooperation in Agriculture, held in Sanya, Hainan Province, China, the Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS) outlined a strategy to expand the area dedicated to new cassava varieties and advanced farming practices to over 500,000 hectares in Africa.

These improved varieties and techniques are expected to raise cassava yields above 17 tonnes per hectare. This is a substantial increase from the current average of 8.5 tonnes per hectare in Africa while enhancing food security and reducing poverty among smallholder farmers.

Over time, Chinese institutions have made significant strides in cassava research and development. The CATAS, for instance, has developed over 20 high-yield, disease-resistant cassava varieties and introduced various cassava cultivation and processing technologies.

Additionally, the institution has also expanded its cassava cooperation to the industrial sector, establishing automatic production lines for cassava flour, biscuits, and crisps in countries such as Nigeria, Tanzania, and Uganda.

Over the past decade, China has established 24 agricultural technology demonstration centers in Africa and introduced over 300 advanced agricultural technologies, resulting in an average yield increase of 30 to 60 percent for local crops.

By the end of 2021, Chinese enterprises had invested 12.8 billion yuan (approximately $1.77 billion) in African agriculture, reflecting an average annual growth rate of 11.4 percent. In 2023, the trade volume of agricultural products between China and Africa is expected to surpass $10 billion, nearly doubling the figure from a decade ago.

Joseph Akahome
Joseph Akahome
Joseph O Akahome (OJ) is a writer, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Literature from the University of Benin. He is an avid agriculturist, with a bias for poultry and an insatiable appetite for chicken wings. When he is neither reading nor researching, he likes to spend recreational time playing board games, or swimming in serene forested lakes.

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