Targeting of Grain Legumes for Income and Nutritional Security in South Asia uri icon

abstract

  • The Tropical Legumes II (TL-II) project, funded by the BMGF, aims to improve the lives and livelihoods of smallholder farmers in the drought-prone areas of sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and South Asia through improved productivity and production of six major tropical legumes – Chickpea, Common bean, Cowpea, Groundnut, Pigeonpea and Soybean. It has been implemented in ten target countries that included in WCA, ESA and SA regions in two phases (Phase 1: 2007-08 to 2010-11; Phase-2: 2011-2014). But, the present paper discusses about only three legumes (Chickpea, Pigeonpea and Groundnut) crops and the interventions carried out in India only. Specifically, this initiative has been focusing on proper targeting for development of improved cultivars of food legumes, promotion of their adoption, proactive public sector policies and finally linking these small holders to markets and value chains. A number of studies have been completed in six states (Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Bihar, Karnataka, Odisha and Tamil Nadu) in India and Barind region of Bangladesh during last eight years (2007-2014) of project implementation. The main objective of this paper is to summarize those key findings across crops and also to identify various potential opportunities and challenges for promotion of legumes in the future. These studies have examined and documented the existing situation in legumes cultivation, constraints faced by the farmers, market linkages, potential opportunities for their expansion etc. In close association with crop improvement scientists, Farmers' Participatory Varietal Selection (FPVS) approach was implemented for assessing farmers preferred traits in these crops. These preferred varieties were identified, released formally, multiplied and supplied as seed samples to legume growers in intervention sites. Subsequently, studies were also conducted on monitoring early adoption of newly introduced improved cultivars and their performance in the targeted locations. All those findings emanated from various studies along with lessons learnt during the process are highly valuable to share among NARS partners, researchers, academicians and donors

publication date

  • 2016