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ToTs held on improved sesame technology package

454 model farmers and development agents drawn from North Gondar zone sesame business clusters receive training on improved sesame production technologies from June 04-08, 2014.

The trainings were organised by Sesame Business Network (SBN) Support Programme in collaboration with Gondar Agricultural Research Center and Woreda Offices of Agriculture.

354 model farmers and 100 development agents from the existing and newly formed clusters attended the training. The trainings were given in seven different places; namely, Kokit, Meka, Shinfa, Quara, Sanja, Abrhajira and Soroka. The following table shows the places and number of participants.

Training Places No. of model Farmers No. of Development Agents/Experts Total no. of Participants
Kokit 61 11 72
Meka 15 4 19
Shinfa 25 7 32
Quara 47 12 59
Sanja 86 32 118
Abrhajira 89 21 110
Seroka 31 13 44
Total 354 100 454

The trainings focused on the improved sesame production package.  Attention was given to the 20 important steps which would help farmers’ double yield and improve the quality of sesame.

Participants were also trained on how they can manage demonstration plots which will be held in 414 farmer training centers and model farmers’ plots.

The trainings were supported by practical examples.  Trainees practiced row planting using plastic bottles.

Sesame Production Manual

All the trainees got a nicely produced sesame production manual which shows the 20 important steps to improve yield and quality of sesame. The manual was prepared based on rigorous researches and previous year’s experiences. It is produced in such a way that farmers could easily understand it. It has colorful and attractive pictures as well as simple and understandable language that depicts the various steps of sesame production. It is also handy so that farmers can keep it in their pockets. The manual is produced in both Amharic and Tigregna languages and it has been distributed to participants of the training. If farmers strictly follow all the 20 steps mentioned in the production booklet, they will double their yield and improve the quality of their produce.

Trainees’ impression

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Melkamu Molla, a model farmer from Quara

Trainees expressed their satisfaction and impression concerning the training. Melkamu Molla, a farmer from Mahdit Kebele, at Quara said, “till recently we have been following what our fathers and forefathers where doing. I have never tried row planting. I never used improved seed varieties. We did not get more benefit because of the traditional farm practice we follow. The efforts that we exert and the benefit that we get out of it did not match.  He added, “This year by following the 20 steps that I have learnt I will try to double my yield. I am determined to get 10 quintal from a hectare.”

Melkamu is very happy to have the production guide in his pocket. He said he will keep it just like a holy books. He has an ardent believe that the information in the booklet will help improve his own and his family’s life.

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Dasashe Genet, a development agent in Gelego

Dasashe Genet, a development agent in Gelego Kebele said the ToT will help model farmers to serve as teachers for other farmers. She said farmers believed that they will go and teach others in their area.

She said she is happy because the fact that model farmers have been trained on the improved sesame production package will make her and her colleagues work somewhat easier as these model farmers would also help other farmers together with them.  She also likes the production guide very much. She said, “The production guide is produced in such a way that attracts farmers’ attention. Even those farmers who cannot read and write can understand something from the attractive pictures.” Dasashe has a strong belief that farmers will double their product this agriculture season.

Trainees are expected to train other farmers in their vicinities.

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By Sesame Business Network, Gondar-Ethiopia