A man who benefitted from the PADANE project is harvesting his crop.

An agricultural development support project for nutrition and entrepreneurship in Burundi

In the context of its Multi Annual Country Strategic Plan 2019-2022, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Burundi requested SNV to co-create and co-design a coherent multi-year project around food and nutrition security called PADANE, the acronym for “Projet d’Appui au Développement Agricole pour la Nutrition et l’Entrepreneuriat”. This project will increase resilience of vulnerable rural populations and improve incomes through market linkages and private-sector agribusiness development.

Burundi has a diverse agro-ecological landscape that allows the cultivation of a wide variety of agricultural products, particularly for domestic markets in horticulture and commercial crops such as sorghum, passion fruit, and small niche types of crops such as patchouli for essential oils.

Growing urbanisation causes food demand to increase, offering opportunities for the development of domestic agri-food chains. The country’s population is growing fast and the competition for land resources is high. The hilly landscape, however, makes it very vulnerable to erosion and soil degradation in the absence of sustainable farming and soil conservation practices. Consequently, arable land is increasingly scarce. Burundi remains one of the world’s poorest countries, with almost 65% of the population living below the poverty line. Food and nutrition insecurity is widespread, with Burundi ranking last on the 2013 Global Hunger Index.

Road networks, processing facilities for quality products, and market infrastructures are poorly developed and not well organised. Marketing and logistics, therefore, remain a challenge. Management of food safety and development of standards also need attention, especially for domestic processed foods.

According to the World Bank, agriculture remains the backbone of Burundi’s economic growth, employing between 80-90% of the population. The country’s agriculture consists mostly of subsistence farming on small plots of land with low productivity due to, among others, inefficient agricultural practices, degraded land, high vulnerability to erosion, and irregular rainfall. Agricultural input services and agricultural extension to farmers are scarce and of doubtful quality. Production for markets is very limited.

The approach

PADANE is a multi-annual project that will last until March 2025. Funded by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Burundi, the project builds upon the results of SCAD and PAPAB projects, both funded by the latter, which introduced the PIP (Plan Intégré du Paysan) approach to 77,000 rural smallholder farmers. PADANE enhances training modules of the PIP approach to scale up and link to the other workstreams such as inclusive value chains, inclusive finance, food and nutrition security, and opportunities for youth employment to ensure sustainability. Gender is cross-cutting and has been introduced in all project approaches, which are also supported by a learning, dialogue, and advocacy component. Hygiene is another cross-cutting workstream integrated into PADANE in 2022 as a pilot. It is now being implemented in 5 out of the 7 provinces where the project is active.

The project is being executed by several implementing partners: both national and international NGOs, private partners, and research institutions, coordinated by SNV. It covers seven provinces of Burundi and the selected value chains in which PADANE is active are white sorghum, sunflower, patchouli, dairy, chicken and eggs, amaranth, passion fruit, and tree tomatoes.

Overall objective:

The PADANE project aims at improving the living conditions of agricultural households, women and young people, and market actors through increased incomes, job creation for youth and women, food and nutritional security and resilience to climate change.

Our donors and partners

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