Following two decades of work on aquaculture technologies for smallholder farmers, WorldFish is leading the aquaculture component of the Agriculture and Nutrition Extension Project (ANEP), targeting poor farmers in Bangladesh and Nepal.The main goal of ANEP aquaculture component was to increase fish production, household nutrition, incomes and alternative employment opportunities for smallholders by facilitating the adoption of productive and environmentally sustainable agricultural technologies.
Aquaculture is needed to meet future demand for fish and other seafood, but sustainable growth requires we better understand and manage risks. Risks are aplenty in aquaculture, some of which we are only now beginning to understand and address. The most important, from a development perspective, are those that make the lives of vulnerable smallholders worse rather than better.
A multiple purpose wetland inventory is being developed and promoted through partnerships and specific analyses at different scales in response to past uncertainties and gaps in inventory coverage. A partnership approach is being promoted through the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands to enable a global inventory database to be compiled from individual projects and analyses using remote sensing and GIS. Individual projects that are currently part of this global effort are described.
In response to citizens' calls for support, the Fisheries Administration, the Culture and Environment Preservation Association (CEPA), a local NGO, and Salaphoum researchers, with technical and financial support from Wetland Alliance, have joined forces to manage deep pools in Cambodia's upper Mekong.
Many sources of information that discuss currents problems of food security point to the importance of farmed fish as an ideal food source that can be grown by poor farmers, (Asian Development Bank 2004). Furthermore, the development of improved strains of fish suitable for low-input aquaculture such as Tilapia, has demonstrated the feasibility of an approach that combines “cutting edge science” with accessible technology, as a means for improving the nutrition and livelihoods of both the urban poor and poor farmers in developing countries (Mair et al. 2002).
The potential for integrating aquaculture with agriculture has been widely recognized as a means of improving the use of inputs, diversifying output and economic opportunity, and enabling smallholder producers to maintain and strengthen livelihoods. This paper describes the outcomes of this approach and explains the extent to which it has been taken up and has led to sustained and self-generated capacity. Based in particular on experience in Malawi, Ghana and Cameroon, it also considers implications more widely in the region.
Rural households who fail to gain a voice in decisions over the management of shared forests, pasturelands, wetlands and fisheries face heightened risks to their livelihoods, particularly as competition increases between existing and new user groups. Exclusion from decision-making increases vulnerability of rural households, making it more difficult for them to move out of poverty and thwarting broader efforts to achieve sustainable resource management. Poor rural women in particular often face institutionalized barriers to effective participation in resource management.
The CGIAR Research Program on Aquatic Agricultural Systems (AAS) is pursuing a Research in Development approach that emphasizes the importance of embedding research in the development context. Reflecting this emphasis the six elements of this approach are a commitment to people and place, participatory action research, gender transformative research, learning and networking, partnerships, and capacity building. It is through the careful pursuit of these six elements that we believe that the program will achieve the development outcomes we aspire to, and do so at scale.
The CGIAR Research Program on Aquatic Agricultural Systems (AAS) began operations in July 2011, and a summary report on progress in the first eight months was produced in February 2012. Since that time the program has moved ahead with roll-out in focal countries, pursuing areas of science where particular innovation is needed, developing key partnerships, and establishing governance and management arrangements for the program. The present report on progress summarizes the main highlights from this work.
This CGIAR Research Program’s vision is for the health, livelihoods and future prospects of the poor and vulnerable, especially women and children, to be transformed through consumption of adequate amounts of meat, milk and/or fish and from benefiting from the associated animal source food value chains. CRP3.7 aims to realize this vision by seizing upon an unprecedented opportunity to integrate and exploit three ongoing revolutions – the Livestock Revolution, the Blue Revolution and the Gene Revolution.