26 October 2023 (Antananarivo, Madagascar) – A host country agreement between the Malagasy Government and the non-profit research organization International Potato Center (CIP) was signed at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs that laid the groundwork for food and nutrition security research and development in the country.
The agreement between the two parties was officially signed by Dr. Paul Demo, CIP Regional Director for Africa, who represented CIP Director General, and the Government represented by Her Excellency Madam Yvette Sylla, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Madagascar. This agreement with the host country will enable CIP to work more effectively in Madagascar.
“As an international non-profit organization, CIP receives money from donors to benefit the Malagasy population. We do research, not for research’s sake, but for development’s sake,” said Dr. Demo.
In Madagascar, CIP has been working with a national research center called “FIFAMANOR” (Fiompiana sy Fambolena Malagasy Norvezianina) since the 1980s to select potato varieties and since the 1990s for sweetpotatoes. To date, 15 orange, yellow, and violet-fleshed sweetpotato varieties have been developed, and four Irish potato varieties have been released.
In 2019, in collaboration with the Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, CIP began to contribute to the development of scientific and agricultural research capacities, poverty reduction, and the development of root and tuber crops sector and value chains. CIP established a presence in Madagascar in May 2020 thanks to a project funded by IFAD (International Fund for Agricultural Development) to support and promote the production and utilisation of Orange-Fleshed Sweetpotato. Hosted by AfricaRice, it agreed and signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock in July 2021 to further its operational capacity.
Donors and partners also attended the signing ceremony: representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock and the Ministry of the Interior and Decentralization; a representative of the World Bank; a representative of the National Office of Nutrition; the Head of the National Center for Applied Research in Rural Development or “Foibem-pirenena momba ny Fikarohana ampiharina amin’ny Fampandrosoana ny eny Ambanivohitra” in Malagasy; the Country Representatives of the CGIAR research centers in Madagascar, namely AfricaRice and the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA).
CIP has two projects in southern Madagascar to promote the orange-fleshed sweetpotato, a climate-resilient, and nutritious food rich in vitamin A. The “Sweet Recovery” project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) started in October 2021 and is extending to December 2024. It aims to distribute and facilitate access to planting materials and inform and train beneficiaries on best practices for growing, storing, and consuming orange-fleshed sweetpotatoes. The World Bank-funded “Building Sweeter Livelihoods” project is part of the Government’s “Mionjo” project, with an implementation period from May 2023 to May 2025. Its objectives are to improve the socio-economic situation of farmers by promoting the consumption and processing of orange-fleshed sweetpotatoes.
For more information on CIP’s work in Madagascar, visit www.cipotato.org.
For further information contact
Ny Antsa TAFARASOA, Communication and Knowledge Management Specialist
CIP was founded in 1971 as a research-for-development organization with a focus on potato, sweetpotato and Andean roots and tubers. It delivers innovative science-based solutions to enhance access to affordable nutritious food, foster inclusive sustainable business and employment growth, and drive the climate resilience of root and tuber agri-food systems. Headquartered in Lima, Peru, CIP has a research presence in more than 20 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
CGIAR is a global research partnership for a food-secure future. CGIAR science is dedicated to transforming food, land and water systems in a climate crisis. Its research is carried out by CGIAR Centers/Alliances in close collaboration with hundreds of partners, including national and regional research institutes, civil society organizations, academia, development organizations and the private sector. www.cgiar.org
CIP thanks the government of Madagascar, USAID, World Bank, IFAD, FIFAMANOR, FOFIFA and local association for supporting its work in Madagascar.