In Nigeria maize is a critical staple food and feed crop. The crop is cultivated across all ecologies in the country, however, production potential is highest in the Guinea savanna zone and the wetter Sudan savanna.
The TAMASA Nigeria project commenced activities in 2015 with conduct of meetings and discussions with key partners and stakeholders to solicit their understanding of the project’s vision and objectives as well as their cooperation and assistance in the implementation of the project activities.
The project was implemented within 3 focal states: Kano, Kaduna and Katsina. Within these states, we were conducting socio-economic panel surveys as well as agronomic and geospatial research activities in specific Local Government Areas (LGAs) including, Makarfi, Lere, Soba, Ikara, Doguwa, Tudun wada, Bunkure, Funtua, Bakori, and Dandume. The results from these studies assisted the project and partners to co-develop portable tools and software thathelped in taking informed agronomic decisions such as fertilizer recommendation, varietal selection, fertilizer blending, etc.
It is believed that with some training,;extension agents and other end users foundthese products user-friendly and beneficial for making decisions regarding efficient use of agro-inputs such as fertilizers, manure, and choice of appropriate agronomic practices for increased maize productivity. At the end of the 2018, TAMASA hoped to increase farmers’ maize yield by 75%.
TAMASA adopted a use-case model or approach that enabled users to examine production/system challenges and options for solving them. By engaging both SG Global 2000 and Doreo Partners in needs assessment, we identified a fertilizer recommendation tool and variety selection tool as key instruments that improved extension delivery services within Nigeria’s maize-based system.
From the project’s inception, sustained efforts have been made to earn the support and cooperation of the key partners and service providers. Similar efforts were made to engage other stakeholders that have common or related goal with the TAMASA project. Our outreach to partners and stakeholders in focused on generating interests towards co-development of tools and commitment to own and use the tools, when developed. We have successfully created awareness through contacts, meetings, trainings and workshops, which we intensified over the years . Similarly, we have conducted field days and built good interactions with host communities as we implemented field trials and surveys across the core maize belt of Nigeria.
The TAMASA Nigeria Project had following key partners; Centre for Dryland Agriculture (CDA), Bayero University, Kano (BUK); Sasakawa Global 2000 (SG 2000); Doreo Partners, NOTORE and SeedCo. BUK was the implementer of the project field investigations in the country with some support from IIAT. Both SG 2000 and Doreo Partners were service providers whose business was to offer good extension delivery services to their clientele farmers in their areas of operation. Their initial interest in TAMASA for FR and VT was to enable them to efficiently deliver their service so that farmers attain higher maize productivity and return on investment.
BUK implemented the NOTs, VTs, PTs and APS across the focal states in collaboration with the extension agents of the service provider (SG 2000 and Doreo Partners) that were the primary end users of the TAMASA tools.
The project has enjoyed tremendous support from these partners in addition to a lot of support from many government and non-governmental agencies. To achieve greater impact, the project strived to build stronger partnerships and linkages with other stakeholders on the maize value chain as well as collaborated with sister maize projects/research institutes in the country such as SARD-SC, OFRA, NAERLS, and IAR.