New project supporting agroecological transformation processes of India’s agriculture and food systems
Timeframe: January 2021 – December 2025
Commissioning Agency: BMZ
Project volume: 7.5 Mio €
Presenting “SuATI” – funded by BMZ and implemented by GIZ India in partnership with the Indian Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare (MoA&FW), this new project aims to strengthen agroecological transformation processes of agricultural and food systems at national and state level with a focus on market development and farmer cooperatives.
Agriculture and food systems are central to India’s economy, providing livelihoods for more than half of its population of 1.3 billion people. The Green Revolution made the country food self-sufficient, but small-holder farmers are growing more and more disappointed about the current state of agriculture and food systems, and so are their customers: Ever more inputs for stagnating yields and low quality, increasing dependencies due to short-term reactions instead of long-term solutions and climate change is hitting hard.
Agroecological approaches show promise to increase farm incomes, re-cultivate degraded land, improve nutrition security through diversification, and reduce environmental challenges. In India, there is a growing number of sustainable business models combining traditional circular farming practices with innovative technological and management approaches that do hold promise to respond to national and global challenges and escape from the vicious cycle of poverty and environmental degradation. The Indian government increasingly promotes programmes for ecological and natural farming as well as agroforestry. Several Indian states have announced to completely shift to organic or natural farming.
The new project “Support to Agroecological Transformation Processes in India” (SuATI) aims to strengthen these ongoing agroecological transformation processes at three levels:
At the knowledge system level SuATI aims to improve the exchange and coherent application of knowledge on agroecological practices in India as well as internationally. The economic, environmental, and social benefits of such approaches are identified through studies and an improved exchange of experiences.
At state level in Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Assam, SuATI strengthens the implementation of agroecological approaches and programmes with a focus on market development, thereby reinforcing a core idea of agroecological transformation – the link between producers and consumers. Support is provided in the identification and upscaling of successful agroecological business models and the enhancement of consumer awareness as well as advice to state departments on the agroecological orientation of programmes.
At national level, SuATI works with the Indian Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare (MoA&FW) and other key partners to anchor agroecological principles in national programmes. Focus is placed on cross-sectoral and cross-policy exchanges and the translation of resulting recommendations into action.
The project is commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) under the Special Initiative “One World – No Hunger” and will be implemented jointly by GIZ and MoA&FW.
Ute Rieckmann – Project manager
Support to Agroecological Transformation Processes in India
Agroecology, food systems, rural development, India