4 October 2012: The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) has launched a new programme to channel climate and environmental finance to smallholder farmers in an effort to leverage a greater impact on climate change resilience through IFAD's new annual investments of approximately $1 billion.
The Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Programme (ASAP) will provide financing targeted at integrating and scaling-up adaptation into traditional agricultural development for smallholder activities.
The first grant of $4.9 million through the ASAP programme was approved to support the integration of adaptation into activities in the provinces of Gaza, Inhambane and Maputo in the Republic of Mozambique, through the $45 million Pro-poor Value Chain Project in the Maputo and Limpopo Corridors (PROSUL). The project works on value chains related to irrigated horticulture, cassava, and red meat, and aims to increase income of farmers through intensification and diversification. The project's climate change elements are designed to respond to scarce and irregular rainfall, and to adapt to an expected long-term reduction in soil moisture content.
Activities will include installation of water management infrastructure, improvement of weather station networks, capacity building for farmer groups, and new agricultural techniques such as intensified cassava systems that integrate mixed cropping. This is expected to result in strengthened capacity to adapt to emerging risks and a reduction of soil degradation in drought-prone regions. [IFAD Press Release]