About the Project
While Afghanistan’s agricultural production, marketing, and public extension and research systems have made notable improvements in the early 2000’s, the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation, and Livestock’s (MAIL) ability to develop and support demand-driven research programs and subsequent extension support for farmers is crucial for continued progress in the country’s agricultural sector.
The USAID-funded AGRED program was created to strengthen extension delivery systems at the national, provincial and district levels by providing training, coordinating and supporting research and extension interventions, and monitoring their outputs, progress and impacts.
The Borlaug Institute is proud to serve as a member of the consortium of three universities (Washington State University, University of California–Davis, and Texas A&M University) that, through coordination with USAID and Roots of Peace, will train research and extension personnel throughout Afghanistan.
The training program conducted by the consortium had five objectives:
- Increasing the knowledge of DAIL (Directorate of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock) staff regarding farm production practices that increase production, income and food security through short-term, in-country trainings;
- Increasing the skills of MAIL and DAIL research and extension staff to conduct research under controlled conditions on Research Centers to assess new technologies and practices, and use both research plots and on-farm demonstrations to deliver technical information to farmers;
- Increasing the capacity of MAIL and DAIL research and extension managers through intensive medium term training, including regional short courses and individual mentoring;
- Enable MAIL and DAIL to conduct future trainings based upon the training originally presented by expatriates. The goal is to enable MAIL and DAIL to perform all their future trainings with their own staff; and
- Establishing a library of training materials at MAIL that include the materials needed to conduct the research and extension courses.