CSISA in Bangladesh

The third phase of CSISA runs from 2015-2020, and is implemented by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) with the backing of a wide range of public and private sector partners in Bangladesh. The project builds on previous efforts convened by CSISA in Bangladesh (Phase I and II activities, the CSISA expansion project in Bangladesh (CSISA-BD), and the Rice Value Chain Project). In its third phase, CSISA provides a strategic overarching framework that guides and supports inter-related projects, while maintaining a focus on scaling-out innovative crop management practices and technologies to smallholder farmers.

CSISA locations in Banglades (click to enlarge)

CSISA locations in Bangladesh (click to enlarge)

In Bangladesh, CSISA Phase III focuses on three thematic work streams covering the following topics:

  1. Directly sown rice to address labor and energy constraints to precision rice establishment.
  2. Agronomic and variety recommendations to reduce the threat of wheat blast.
  3. Re-envisioning viable scaling pathways for precision nutrient management.
  4. Increasing the capacity of NARES to conduct participatory science and technology evaluations.
  5. Rice-fallows development in coastal Bangladesh.
  6. Deployment of better-bet agronomic messaging through private sector partners and dealer networks.
  7. Healthy rice seedlings for higher yields.
  8. High-value, premium quality rice in expansion Bangladesh.
  9. Commercial expansion of two-wheel tractor based machinery and associated service provision models for reapers and seeders.
  10. Managing risk by coping with climate extremes: Early wheat for combating heat stress.

The CSISA Mechanization and Irrigation Project (CSISA-MI)

CSISA-MI emerged out of CSISA’s ongoing efforts in the USAID/Bangladesh Mission-funded CSISA expansion project (2010-2015), and during CSISA Phase II. It continues to be strategically aligned with the broader CSISA Phase III program in Bangladesh, and is led by CIMMYT in partnership with International Development Enterprises (iDE). CSISA-MI is a five- year project (July 2013 – September 2018) that focuses on unlocking agricultural productivity through increased adoption of agricultural mechanization technologies and services. CSISA-MI maintains the following objectives:

  • Strategic Objective 1: To sustainably intensify and diversify agricultural production in Southern Bangladesh through surface water irrigation.
  • Strategic Objective 2: To transform agriculture in Southern Bangladesh through broad-based access to agricultural mechanization services.
  • Strategic Objective 3: To develop new models for public and private institutions to support irrigation and agricultural mechanization in Southern Bangladesh.

As a result of CSISA-MI’s activities, more than 62,000 farmers have utilized resource efficient crop sowing, irrigation, and harvesting services on 28,000 hectares throughout Bangladesh. Hands-on training on small-scale agricultural machineries has been delivered to 10,000 farmers through collaborative project, public, and private sector efforts. CSISA-MI’s private sector partners have also invested in excess of US$ 1.6 million of their own funds to import, manufacture, distribute, advertise, and sell machinery to farmers in southern Bangladesh.

Bangladesh News

  • Weeding Out Yield Losses in South Asia

    Weed infestation is among the primary barriers to achieving the full yield potential of crops, including improved cultivars, in South Asia. According to Virender Kumar, Senior Scientist – Weed Science, International Rice Research Institute, “Unlike insects and disease where effects are more often immediately evident in the field, weeds are like a slow poison, working unseen in the background. Weeds are endemic to agricultural fields, have received relatively less attention from farmers, and are difficult to react to.” Studies have shown that yield losses due to weeds can range from 15 ...

  • Scientists Trained to Fight Wheat Blast in South Asia

    Last year, the devastating disease wheat blast was observed in South Asia for the first time. Caused by the fungus Magnaporthe oryzae pathotype Triticum (MoT) and first discovered in Paraná State, Brazil, in the mid-1980s, blast constitutes a major constraint to wheat production in South America. The sudden appearance of a highly virulent MoT strain in Bangladesh presents a serious threat to food and income security in South Asia, home to 300 million undernourished people and whose inhabitants consume over 100 million tons of wheat each year. Last year, blast ...

  • Ensuring Access to Finance for Faster Technology Adoption in Northern Bangladesh

    Cereal Systems Initiative for South Asia (CSISA) Phase III in Bangladesh, led by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and implemented jointly with International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), has finalized a series of joint venture agreements with Eco Social Development Organization (ESDO) and Thengamara Mohila Sabuj Sangha (TMSS), key microfinance institutions in northern Bangladesh. The partnerships will help ensure timely access to finance for local service providers in Thakurgaon and Dinajpur districts, and provide a much-needed ‘shot in the arm’ for ...

  • Expanding High Value and Premium Quality Rice in Bangladesh

    Securing a high and stable income from farming despite rising cultivation costs is a common challenge for smallholder farmers. This is certainly true in Bangladesh’s Feed the Future (FtF) zone, where rapidly increasing labor wages and input costs are making rice cultivation less profitable and less attractive for farmers. Bangladesh rice farmers currently grow more than 70 premium quality rice (PQR) varieties, which are characterized by long, slender and fine grains; may or may not have an aroma; and command a higher price than other, popular rice varieties. PQR varieties have ...

  • Healthy Rice Seedlings for Improved Livelihoods

    Low-cost interventions to promote healthy rice seedlings scaled-out in Bangladesh Rice nurseries are an important, but often underappreciated, component of a successful agronomic production cycle. How a rice crop is managed in its early stages influences performance and yield later. For example, it is very important to transplant healthy seedlings at an appropriate time to get optimum yield. However, in the absence of proper nursery management and supervision, many farmers obtain suboptimal yields. As a common practice in South Asia, rice seedlings are grown in nurseries on flat seedbeds, and are then ...


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