Strategies to Adapt, Disseminate and Scale Out Legume Based Technologies
Waswa, B. S.
Kimetu, J. M.
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The full potential of legume based technologies can only be achieved if farmers widely adopt these technologies. Widespread adoption of legume-based technologies calls for the identification of spatial and temporal niches of legumes in the farming systems. The entry point may be immediate provision of food and fodder but also contribution to soil fertility improvement and erosion control among others. Whichever the objective, there is need to demonstrate the immediate benefits to be accrued by the adopters if large scale adoption is to be achieved. There is need to address challenges hindering widescale adoption of legume technologies such as availability of improved germplasm, poor markets and policy. Whereas the national systems play a key role in promoting legumes, the private sector continues to effectively complement government efforts to increase availability and accessibility to quality seed. Flow of knowledge cannot be achieved through a narrow prescriptive approach, but requires development and testing of a battery of possible interventions for soil fertility improvements suited to the specific agroecological environment together with the farmers. Better and innovative mechanisms are required for sharing of knowledge between all those involved in trying to improve the productivity of smallholder agriculture. This should cover the use or both print and audio media as complement to the traditional approaches such as the use of field days and onfarm demonstrations. The focus of this chapter is therefore to look at how the above issues have been addressed in adapting and disseminating legume-based technologies in Africa.