Tanager is committed to helping smallholder farmers access a nutritious and diverse diet. To that end, in India, Tanager is working with Self-Help Groups as part of the Shubh Mint project to encourage households to adopt the use of kitchen gardens to improve household nutrition, including advice on starting and managing their gardens and providing on-going support as the gardens are developed.. Currently, there are around 700 smallholder farmers who have raised kitchen gardens, growing 5 types of seasonal vegetables with the support of Tanager’s extension teams and Self-Help Group supervisors.
Covid-19 has significantly impacted the livelihoods of many smallholder farming communities in India. Disruptions in supply chains including logistics and transportation, limited access to agricultural inputs, and the inability to sell produce are been the biggest challenges that farmers face. Tanager, drawing upon its decades of experience in agricultural value chains is working on adapting strategies to support the small and marginal farmers across all its projects in India.
Deepening their work in the peanut and cashew value chains, Tanager and HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation (Helvetas) today announced the launch of a seven-month research project to study aflatoxin prevalence in the peanut and cashew value chains in northern Mozambique.
In India, Tanager partners with smallholder farmers, government entities, corporations, and foundations to help increase farmer income through robust training on Good Agricultural Practices, support for gender equality, strengthening of Farmer Producer Organizations, and streamlined access to markets. COVID-19 and the restrictions put in place by the government have brought new challenges to implementing this work. However, Tanager’s close connection to the communities where we work is helping us make progress on commitments without risking the safety of farmers or staff.
Lajjawati is a smallholder farmer from Barabanki in Uttar Pradesh, India who has overcome enormous personal and professional adversity on her journey to prosperity. When Lajjawati’s husband was killed in an accident, she was left caring for her small family farm – and her eight children – alone. Her economic situation was made worse by the pervasive problem of gender inequality in India.
Tanager and Mars presented a webinar on the design and implementation of the Shubh Mint Project for The Living Income Community of Practice, hosted by the Sustainable Food Lab.
Usha Devi is a mint farmer in Mubarkapur village in Zaidpur cluster of Barabanki District in India. She is also a project participant in the co-created Shubh Mint Project. For Usha, Shubh Mint provides more than an economic lifeline, it empowers her to improve a difficult living situation.
Jayesh Bhai Jaman Bhai Bhakkad is a 41-year-old farmer from Thanapipli, Junagadh, Gujarat (western India). For 24 years, Jayesh farmed cash crops like cotton, peanuts, and vegetables using traditional farming methods. Last year, Jayesh began noticing a decline in his output and income, due in part to a fungus that was attacking his peanut crop. In response, he sought out training programs from a local university, spent INR 6000 on pesticides to combat the unknown virus that was yellowing his normally green peanut plants. However, despite Jayesh’s efforts in applying the pesticide and taking classes from the local university, his crop continued to wilt.
Conditions in Andhra Pradesh, India can make life difficult for smallholder farmers. When drought combines with poor soil health, profits can be slim. To make matters worse, to save money farmers often rely on staple crops as their only food source. These staple crops are high in carbohydrates but low in vitamins and nutrients. This lack of dietary diversity leads to malnutrition, further driving down productivity and incomes. The APFMRP project – implemented by Tanager – is working in Andhra Pradesh to break this vicious cycle and give farmers the opportunity to earn more money and live happier and healthier lives.
The Ganga Women Self Help Group in Ujarwara village, Fatehpur block, Uttar Pradesh is just one of 319 SHGs formed under the Shubh Mint project. The group is comprised of twelve women, eleven of whom initially could neither read nor write their own names. This deficiency in their education had dire consequences: women were dependent on others for every aspect of their financial life, a heavy burden was placed on the one woman who was literate, and there was a general lack of confidence among the members of the group stemming from this gap in their education.