In Togo, agriculture employs two-thirds of the population and accounts for about 41% of GDP. Yields have been consistently low for food crops and the performance of the main export crops (cotton, coffee and cocoa) has been deteriorating. Meat and fish production are also low and the country relies on imports to make up for its food deficit. Rural infrastructure is scarce, poorly maintained, and a major constraint to growth. Key challenges also include weak institutional capacities, insufficient coordination, and weak service delivery due to a deteriorated business climate. An assessment by the WFP showed that coping strategies included adults reducing their daily food intake in favor of children, downgrading the nutritional quality of the main meal, eating seeds stocked for the next season, and selling livestock.
The Rural Development Support Project (PADAT) contributed to improving the food security and income generation for smallholder farmers through the development of the rice, maize, and cassava value chains. This objective was attained through increased production and productivity as well as through the improved processing and marketing of crops. In addition, PADAT mainstreamed climate change adaptation into its interventions through collaboration with the Global Environment Facility.
At the end of the project, IFAD rated the projected as Moderately Unsatisfactory. Some activities, such as the distribution of the Quick Start Kits, achieved their intended objectives focused on the improvement of production and productivity of maize and rice. However, value-addition activities were less successful as the quality of some imported equipment did not meet the needs of the beneficiaries and most of the markets built were not yet operational at the end of the project.
By the end of the project, PADAT had reached over 327,740 beneficiaries, of whom about half were women. For the beneficiaries of the successfully implemented Quick Start Kits, (i) food insecurity was reduced by at least 1 month per year and in some regions by 1.5 months, (ii) the share of children with chronic malnutrition decreased from 37.9 percent to 24.6 percent from 2012 to 2016, (iii) the rate of households with months of food insecurity decreased from 84 percent in 2012 to 62 percent in 2016, (iv) and the total production of rice and maize grew from 704.56 kg/producer in 2011 to 1,504.9 kg/ producer in 2016 for maize and from 668 kg/producer in 2011 to 1,057.6 kg/producer in 2016 for rainfed rice.
The weak coordination of PADAT’s numerous financial partners (IFAD, GAFSP, GEF, West African Development Bank (BOAD), and ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID)) was the main cause of the poor economic performance of the supported value chains. The combination of Quick Start Kits and warrantage was an effective approach to improving the resilience of vulnerable groups to market price fluctuations. Finally, and (iii) on the replenishment of the Quick Start Kits, a mechanism to ensure sustainable access to inputs for the most vulnerable was needed given the risk of a gradual erosion of the rate of recovery in the absence of a systematic anchoring of Quick Start Kit beneficiaries in cooperatives and their umbrella organizations.
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