The Howard G. Buffett Foundation today announced a collaboration with John Deere and DuPont Pioneer to develop products to support a conservation-based system of agriculture designed and targeted to sustainably improve the productivity of smallholder farmers in Africa. The effort will be piloted in Ghana and include a conservation-based, mechanized product suite developed by John Deere; a system of cover crops and improved inputs from DuPont Pioneer; and support for adoption and training on conservation-based practices by the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.
“The long-term food security of Africa depends upon rebuilding its degraded soils, which can best be achieved through the widespread adoption of conservation agriculture practices,” said Howard G. Buffett, Chairman and CEO of the Howard G. Buffett Foundation. “This requires a focus on smallholder farmers and a system of training, equipment, and inputs to improve the land they farm even as they improve their production. We are proud to be working in partnership with John Deere and DuPont Pioneer to make that system a reality.”
The partnership was inspired by the Howard G. Buffett Foundation’s nearly fifteen-year history of research in conservation agriculture on its research farms in South Africa and the U.S., and its longstanding efforts at promoting adoption of conservation agriculture in Ghana, as detailed in Howard G. Buffett’s new book 40 Chances: Finding Hope in a Hungry World.
The partners hope to develop a vibrant market for small-scale, conservation-based cropping systems and affordable equipment for smallholder farmers, first in Ghana and then across the continent of Africa.