WEBINAR: COVID-19 impact on service delivery to different actors in the value chain

  • 15th May 2020
  • by secretary

15 May, 2020. WEBINAR. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on agricultural value chains – What we can do to mitigate the impact on service delivery to different actors in the value chain.

  • This network provides professional advisory services and capacity building on Value Chain and Market System Development (VC and MSD) in Asia and Pacific Region (APR). 
  • It has been initiated by an IFAD-funded project “Regional training network for scaling up pro-poor value chain programmes”.
  • The Network is drawing on experiences and expertise of Centres of Excellence (CoEs) from seven countries including Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam that specialized in professional training and capacity development on VC and MSD.
The third Webinar in this series is organized together with GFRAS and IFAD.

Recording forthcoming

In this 3rd Webinar of the series the impact of the crises on service delivery to farmers and other value chain actors was highlighted and on potential mechanisms to cope with restrictions and challenges posed to supplying service in times of the crisis.
The Webinar explored the perspective of several service delivery channels (private, public, farmer organisations) and highlight coping mechanisms that are evolving in Asia and beyond in efforts to maintain certain levels of necessary service delivery to the sector.

In Spring 2019 GFRAS launched its new programme: “Delivering Extension Services to the Last-Mile: Improving smallholders’ access to innovation and pluralistic, demand-driven extension services”, in short the Last-Mile Programme (LMP). It will be implemented by AFAAS, APIRAS and RELASER and operate in a selected number of affiliated countries of these three networks. The programme is planned to run from May 2019 till June 2024.

  • Moderator  Rubaiyath Sarvar. Md. Rubaiyath Sarwar (MBA) is the Managing Director of Innovision Consulting, an international consultancy with its bases in Dhaka, Bangladesh and London, UK.  He has over 13 years of experience in consulting for major DFID, USAID, SDC, EU, GIZ projects in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nigeria, Somalia, Sri Lanka and Yemen. He is also serving as the steering committee member for the IFAD Funded Value Chain Capacity Building Network (VCBN) for Asia and the Pacific.
  • Mr. Stuart Morris, Director East West Seeds Knowledge Transfer highlighting the perspective of the (private) supplier side in their efforts to maintain their service levels to clients.
  • Dr Rasheed Sulaiman from the Agricultural Extension South Asia (AESA) member of GFRAS, highlighting the perspective of smallholder, challenges faced and coping mechanisms evolving at field level
  • Ms. Marie-Aude Even, Senior Regional Technical Specialist, Agronomy for Asia and the Pacific at IFAD will provide insights on the importance of bridging the last mile in extension efforts for rural development particularly during times of crisis
  • Mr. Phouthasinh Phimmachanh, secretary to the Lao Farmers Network – LFN and member to the Asian Farmers Association – AFA, providing the perspective of farmers and farmer organisations as clients and receivers of services as well as providers of advisory services to member.
  • Augustus Suting, Manager technical services at meghalaya rural development society
    East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India
  • Mr. Carl Larsen, Executive Secretary GFRAS will bring in the global perspective on rural advisory services and a bird view on evolving coping mechanisms that are successfully responding to the challenges put up during the COVID 19 pandemic
Edited by Grow Asia. Date of Publication: March 2020, 21 pages

A wide range of digital tools might prove helpful to smallholders farmers – anything from online trading to AI imaging could in theory add value. But what could we learn from talking to farmers? What might we gain from asking farmers how they use technology today?

With the support of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Grow Asia did just that, interviewing 100 farmers across the region; in Indonesia, Vietnam and Myanmar. The findings will help founders, agribusinesses and government build technologies which address farmer’s needs and preferences.

The COVID-19 pandemic has given an opportunity to the EAS to be trained on next generation extension tools, especially for providing EAS during crisis. 

Not only is the economy struggling, the Indian agriculture sector––which suffered recently due to an uneven monsoon season––is experiencing another hit due to disruptions from COVID-19. Farmers may not be infected, but they certainly are affected very badly. To ensure that farmers do not face problems in harvesting crops, the Indian government exempted wholesale markets, procurement agencies, farm operations, agri-machinery hiring centers, and farm implements from the lockdown rules. Despite numerous steps and assurances from the government, farmers feel insecure and stressed.

The New Extensionist Learning Kit (NELK), particularly The Module 13 on Risk Mitigation and Adaptation in Extension could be particularly useful, which can be adapted in different crisis situations.