Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org
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World Economic Forum video: "Up to 21 million farmers in 61 countries use the method"

World Economic Forum video: "Up to 21 million farmers in 61 countries use the method" | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

February 11, 2019: This video shown at the World Economic Forum in Davos beings with "This sustainable way of growing rice produces bumper harvests.." See what you can learn about the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) in less than one-and-a-half minutes!

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CANADA: How to fight climate change in agriculture while protecting jobs

CANADA: How to fight climate change in agriculture while protecting jobs | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

In agriculture, climate action usually involves one of two approaches: sustainable intensification to increase agricultural yield while maintaining the ecosystem integrity or agroecological farming to restore agriculture’s ecosystem services. Agroecology includes a mix of social, economic and environmental goals.

Case studies confirm the optimism that the adoption of agroecological principles and practices would feed the growing population in socially, morally and environmentally responsible ways. There are overlaps between sustainable agriculture and agroecology, including climate smart agriculture, conservation agriculture, biodynamic agriculture, organic agriculture and permaculture. One example of the overlap is the “System of Rice Intensification,” which increases yield with lower inputs and lesser environmental damage. Seedlings are planted further apart to allow for robust growth that reduces seed, fertilizer and agrochemical use, and controlled irrigation — instead of conventional flooding — increases water use efficiency and decreases methane emissions.

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MYANMAR: Minoru-Keiwa Myanmar donates rice transplanting, seed cleaning machines to DAR

MYANMAR: Minoru-Keiwa Myanmar donates rice transplanting, seed cleaning machines to DAR | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

A demonstration of rice planting machines, and the donation of rice transplanting and seed cleaning machines to the Department of Agriculture Research (DAR), was held at the DAR research field in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday.
At the event, Union Minister for Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation Dr. Aung Thu witnessed a demonstration of the seed cleaning machine, the leveling of farm land with machinery, and the planting of rice using SRI (System of Rice Intensification) system with Minoru RX61 rice transplanting machine. (It) creates six planting rows, and the distance between rice seedlings can be adjusted from 6 to 12 inches and can carry 23 seedling trays containing 448 seedlings.

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LAOS: ProNet 21 SRI project in Laos

 Photos of SRI activity in Luangprabang Province, Laos. The System of Rice Intensification (SRI) project was undertaken by the NPO ProNet 21 together the Government (PAFO and DAFO) during 2006-2018. The project was funded by through JICA.

SRI-Rice's insight:

An overview of this successful project, is available from here:

http://sri.cals.cornell.edu/countries/laos/index.html#2019

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INDIA: Improving water and nutrient use efficiency in rice by changing crop establishment methods, application of microbial inoculations, and Zn fertilization

INDIA: Improving water and nutrient use efficiency in rice by changing crop establishment methods, application of microbial inoculations, and Zn fertilization | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it
A field experiment was conducted during the wet seasons of 2013 and 2014 to evaluate the effect of three rice establishment methods: viz. puddled transplanted rice (PTR), system of rice intensification (SRI) and aerobic rice system (ARS), two cyanobacteria based inoculants, viz. Anabaena sp (CR1) + Providencia sp (PR3) consortium and Anabaena–Pseudomonas (An‐Ps) biofilm formulation, and zinc (Zn) fertilization on the rice yield, water productivity, and nutrient use efficiency. The yields of rough, brown and milled rice were highest in SRI, which was on par with PTR and both methods proved significantly superior to ARS in both years. The total water productivity of rough and brown rice in the first year was significantly higher in SRI. The SRI method saved 21.9% and 27.4% irrigation water over PTR, and savings in ARS were 37.4% and 50.8% in first and second year respectively, over PTR. The use of An‐Ps biofilm formulation along with 75% RDN improved the agronomic use efficiency of both nitrogenous and phosphatic fertilizers applied. On the basis of the present study, it can be concluded that SRI improved rice yields and water productivity; while involvement of An‐Ps biofilm formulation can be recommended for improved nutrient use efficiency.
SRI-Rice's insight:

Shahane, A. A., et al. 2019. Improving water and nutrient use efficiency in rice by changing crop establishment methods, application of microbial Inoculations, and Zn fertilization. Global Challenges (online first 06 February 2019) doi:10.1002/gch2.201800005

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The miracle method for sustainable rice – and bigger harvests | John Vidal | The Guardian

The miracle method for sustainable rice – and bigger harvests | John Vidal | The Guardian | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

“Rice is both a victim and a cause of climate change,” says Sunny Verghese, CEO of Singapore-based Olam’s, which grows its own rice on 25,000 acres in Nigeria, owns mills and processing plants across south-east Asia and ships nearly 20% of the world’s globally traded rice.

“SRI should influence everyone’s thinking. In Nigeria we saw a 70% increase in yields, albeit from a low base. SRI is revolutionary. It is a genuine change in thinking. It is difficult for scientists to understand that an amateur [like Lalanié] should have a solution. We want to partner with SRI, to scale up in Africa.

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NORTH KOREA (DPRK): Scientific farming to be promoted to increase output

KCNA Watch: "We will work harder to increase grain output this year, the fourth year of the implementation of the five-year strategy for national economic development. The pivot in increased grain production is scientific farming. Cooperative farms will be encouraged to introduce advanced farming methods, including the system of rice intensification, dense planting of maize and rational distribution of earlier and later crops for double or triple cropping, so as to drastically increase per-hectare yield. In paddy rice farming, it is important to introduce water-saving methods, take preventive measures against damage from drought and rainy season and constantly raise the scientific level of blight forecasting."

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An agroecological strategy for adapting to Climate Change: The System of Rice Intensification (SRI)

An agroecological strategy for adapting to Climate Change: The System of Rice Intensification (SRI) | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

 Agricultural production methods developed for less-challenging and more-predictable climatic conditions need to be rethought and revised. The ideas and methods that constitute the system of rice intensification (SRI), now being extrapolated to other crops beyond rice, are enabling farmers to get more production by making reductions in seed, water, and agrochemical inputs. Fortuitously, SRI crops are also more resistant and resilient to the hazards of climate change. When SRI methods are used in irrigated rice production, there is also a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. The main factors that are contributing to SRI crops’ ability to adapt to and mitigate climate-change effects are the enhancement of the growth and functioning of their root systems and at the same time the abundance and diversity of life forms enhanced in the soil by SRI management. Root systems and the soil biota were both ignored by Green Revolution technology.

SRI-Rice's insight:

Uphoff, N., and A. K. Thakur. 2019. An agroecological strategy for adapting to climate change: The System of Rice Intensification (SRI). In: Sarkar A., Sensarma S., vanLoon G. (eds) Sustainable Solutions for Food Security. Springer, Cham. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-77878-5_12 [accessed January 19, 2019]

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MALAYSIA: Making rice production more environment-friendly | WWF

MALAYSIA: Making rice production more environment-friendly | WWF | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it
Ba’ Kelalan, LAWAS: A group of farmers here finally harvests their much awaited Adan rice, planted using chemical-free farming method called, System of Rice Intensification (SRI).
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VIETNAM: Binh Thuân développe des modèles d’agriculture intelligente face au climat

VIETNAM: Binh Thuân développe des modèles d’agriculture intelligente face au climat | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

Grâce à l’assistance de l'organisation néerlandaise de développement SNV dans le projet "Relever la position des femmes dans la production et le commerce agricoles" (FLOW), Binh Thuân a mis en place plusieurs modèles d’agriculture intelligente face au climat. Parmi ces modèles, l’application du système de riziculture intensive s’avère efficace. Binh Thuân s’efforce de généraliser ce modèle afin qu’il soit appliqué sur 3.300 hectares de riziculture d’ici 2025.

SRI-Rice's insight:

With the help of the Dutch SNV Development Organization’s FLOW project, Binh Thuan has set up several models of climate-smart agriculture. The central province, with 43,000 ha. of rice, is frequently hit by drought, and , since 2016, has applied SRI to 255 hectares of rice cultivation in three districts. SRI has saved water and reduced costs while increasing farmer yields and incomes. Binh Thuan will hopefully be using SRI methods on 3,300 ha. by 2025.

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To feed the world amid climate change, we need a better way to grow rice | CBC News

To feed the world amid climate change, we need a better way to grow rice | CBC News | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

In this week's issue of our environment newsletter, we look at a more sustainable way of growing rice and we get straight talk from a young activist at the climate conference in Poland:

Humans have been growing rice for millenniums, so it can seem ignorant to say there's a better way to do it. Yet, for decades, there's been a method that breaks from the norm and claims to do more for farmers and less to hurt the environment. It's called the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) — and climate change may finally drive it mainstream.

SRI-Rice's insight:

ALSO! See the excellent video that accompanies this article:

https://www.cbc.ca/news/thenational/how-do-you-feed-a-world-dealing-with-climate-change-the-question-1.4944105

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KENYA:  Next frontier: Modern rice farming - YouTube

TV news report about SRI from KTN News in Kenya. Find our more about the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) in Kenya and meet some of the people who are at the forefront of research, spread and adoption of SRI there.

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BANGLADESH: The Value of Information in Technology Adoption: Theory and Evidence from Bangladesh

BANGLADESH: The Value of Information in Technology Adoption: Theory and Evidence from Bangladesh | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it
We develop a theoretical model in which adoption decisions are based on information received from others about the quality of a new technology and on their risk attitude. We test the predictions of this model using a field experiment in Bangladesh. We show that treated farmers who receive better training in System of Rice Intensification (SRI) technology have more accurate information about this technology, and have a higher impact on the adoption rate of untreated farmers. We also find that untreated farmers that are more risk-averse tend to adopt less and are less influenced by their treated peers. Finally, a trained farmers' impact on his untrained peers increases if he himself adopts SRI technology. Our results indicate that the crucial determinant of technology adoption for untreated farmers is their degree of risk aversion and the accuracy and reliability of information transmission about the quality of technology circulated among farmers.
SRI-Rice's insight:

 Asadul Islam, Philip Ushchev, Yves Zenou, and Xin Zhang. 2018. The value of information in technology adoption: Theory and evidence from Bangladesh. SSRN. 55p. (see also free version or joint the SRI Research Network to access this article)

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KENYA: New rice method increases yields

KENYA: New rice method increases yields | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

As Monica Awino spreads her rice in the sun to dry at her Nyang’ande home in Nyando, she expects a windfall. For over two decades, Ms Awino toiled and prayed for a better harvest in vain.

The past two seasons have seen her prayers shift from better harvest to reliable market, courtesy of a new technology dubbed system for rice intensification (SRI). The system, borrowed from Mwea Irrigation Scheme, involves intensive utilisation of water, where farmers have equal access to the limited commodity for a particular number of days, then they give it to other farmers, and the cycle continues. This has seen the likes of Awino embrace team work right from land preparation, planting, harvesting and marketing.

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CENTRAL & WEST ASIA: Rice production training to focus on the System of Rice Intensification

CENTRAL & WEST ASIA: Rice production training to focus on the System of Rice Intensification | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

A three-day training in Iran on the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) is being sponsored in May/June by the Central & Western Asia Rice Center (CWARice). The primary trainers will come from Iraq and Iran. The event is intended for rice scientists, rice experts/practitioners and professional rice growers.

SRI-Rice's insight:

This is the first international SRI training that we know of in this part of the world!

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VENEZUELA:  Sistema Intensivo de Cultivo de Arroz (SRI) - Experiencia Venezuela

"El Sistema Intensivo de Cultivo de Arroz (SRI) - Experiencia Venezuela," a PowerPoint by Betsaida Soublette (National Institute of Agricultural Research - INIA) presented at the webinar Sistema Intensivo de Cultivo de Arroz (SRI) - Experiencia Venezuela, February 15, 2019. The area is located in an irrigation scheme in Guárico, Venezuela. (see more info)

SRI-Rice's insight:

On February 15, 2019, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) organized a webinar to bring together those working on SRI in Venezuela over the past several years. The event covered National Institute of Agricultural Research (INIA), Nestlé, and DANAC Foundation SRI trials in the states of Guárico and Portuguesa. (This ppt includes primarily info from Guárico).

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MALAYSIA: Local farmers, local food: A gathering of passionate natural farming advocates in Malaysia

MALAYSIA: Local farmers, local food: A gathering of passionate natural farming advocates in Malaysia | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

February 15, 2019, marked the first Local Farmers, Local Food (LFLF) gathering ever held in Malaysia. This one-of-a-kind event is a gathering of farmers, education professionals, doctors, indigenous peoples, and activists representing eleven of the country’s fourteen states, as well as an international body of volunteers. It was hosted by Sri Lovely, the first and only certified organic rice farm in all of Malaysia, tucked away in the jungle of Kedah, (jelapang padi—Malaysia’s “rice bowl”) and the first Slow Food Community in Malaysia and South East Asia. Captain Zakaria Kamantasha—the CEO of Sri Lovely— has a mantra “if you do good, you get good back”. This mentality seeps into his farming practice in the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) method, a more sustainable way of rice production, and his involvement in starting the first Slow Food Community in Malaysia. 

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TAMIL NADU, INDIA: Water saving and productivity benefits of SRI: A study of tank, canal and groundwater irrigated settings in South India | Water Policy

TAMIL NADU, INDIA: Water saving and productivity benefits of SRI: A study of tank, canal and groundwater irrigated settings in South India | Water Policy | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it
Paddy, which is predominantly cultivated under the conventional inundation method, is the largest water consuming crop in India. Given looming water scarcity, the inundation method of paddy cultivation is no longer sustainable. A newly introduced method of paddy cultivation, popularly known as the System of Rice Intensification (SRI), is reportedly helping to reduce water consumption and increase land productivity. SRI has now been in practice for some years in India but the various impacts of SRI on water saving, land and water productivity as well as on profitability which are expected to vary in different ecological settings – namely in tank, canal and groundwater irrigated areas – remain largely unexplored. In this study, using data collected from a total sample of 300 farmers from three different settings in Tamil Nadu state, an attempt has been made to fill this gap. The study shows that by adopting the SRI method farmers can save about 40% of irrigation water and increase land productivity by about 46% while reducing the cost of cultivation by 23% over the conventional inundation method. While increasing irrigation water productivity and economic water productivity substantially, SRI also generates an additional profit of Rs 17,169/acre (1 USD = INR 70.12; 1 acre = 4047 m2) compared to that realised by non-SRI farmers.
SRI-Rice's insight:

Narayanamoorthy, A., and P. Jothi. 2018. Water saving and productivity benefits of SRI: a study of tank, canal and groundwater irrigated settings in South India. Water Policy 21: 162-177. doi:10.2166/wp.2018.199

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NEPAL: Nepalese rice farmers boost yields by sowing fewer plants and cutting water | NPR

NEPAL: Nepalese rice farmers boost yields by sowing fewer plants and cutting water | NPR | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

Excepts from the National Public Radio (NPR) broadcast on Jan. 28. 2019] - Click on the blue arrow at left to listen to the interview:
BHOLA MAN SINGH BASNET: We are getting more than 50% or in some cases 100% increase in yield by following the SRI.
DANIELLE PREISS: Bhola Man Singh Basnet is a retired agronomist from Nepal's National Agriculture Research Council. He says SRI is not a technology but a set of practices that helps plants grow stronger roots and more seeds per plant. Small farmers in India have broken yield records, and Nepal plans to incorporate it into next year's agriculture policy. ...SRI appeals to Basnet because there's no need to invest in new technology or buy seeds.
BASNET: I like this SRI system very, very much as an agronomist, also because farmers, without spending extra money, they can increase yield.

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 SE ASIA: SRI-Lower Mekong River Basin (SRI-LMB) Project Closer - YouTube

Video produced for the final regional workshop (Nov. 1-2, 2018) of the four-country EU-funded, AIT-led project entitled Sustaining and Enhancing the Momentum for Innovation and Learning around the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) in the Lower Mekong River Basin. The SRI-LMB project, which was lead by the ACISAI Centre at the Asian Institute of Technology in Thailand, benefited 15,000 farmers in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam. (more info: http://sri-lmb.ait.ac.th/

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AFRICA: The SRI Research Network's Africa Collection

AFRICA: The SRI Research Network's Africa Collection | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

Visit the SRI Research Network's Africa Collection, which now has 125 research items. In addition to the 84 journal articles about the System of Rice Intensification in Africa, there are also theses, presentations, and other documents. Join the SRI Research Network (it's free!)
[ALSO!!: The SRI-Africa site will soon have its research database online! Stay tuned!]

SRI-Rice's insight:

What's can you find at the SRI Research Network site? Information on upcoming global events, grants, jobs, and educational opportunities. Members can also apply for competitive travel grants to present SRI research at upcoming international events [Open to those in Asia, Africa and Latin America]

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NEPAL: Effects of Trichoderma seedling treatment with System of Rice Intensification management and with conventional management of transplanted rice

This study evaluated the effects of Trichoderma inoculation of rice plants under SRI management compared with transplanted and flooded rice plants, considering also the effects of different means of fertilization and different varieties in rice. The results indicated significantly better performance (P = 0.01) associated with Trichoderma inoculation in terms of grain yield and other growth-contributing factors, compared to non-inoculated rice cropping. Relatively higher effects on grain yield were recorded also with organic compared to inorganic fertilization; for unimproved (heirloom) varieties compared with improved varieties; and from SRI vs. conventional flooded crop management. The yield increase with Trichoderma treatments across all trials was 31% higher than in untreated plots (4.9 vs 4.5 mt ha−1). Economic analysis indicated that expanding the organic cultivation of local landraces under SRI management should be profitable for farmers where such rice has a good market price due to its premium quality and high demand and when SRI enhances yield. These varieties’ present low yields can be significantly increased by integrating Trichoderma bio-inoculation with SRI cultural methods.

SRI-Rice's insight:

Khadka RB, Uphoff N. 2019. Effects of Trichoderma seedling treatment with System of Rice Intensification management and with conventional management of transplanted rice. PeerJ 7:e5877 https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.5877

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INDIA: By Altering the Method of Farming, Reducing Carbon Emission

INDIA: By Altering the Method of Farming, Reducing Carbon Emission | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

Initiatives have been taken to make agriculture more adaptive and resilient to climate variability and in the process to reduce carbon emission [In India]. ... Of the 8 listed measures in the article for soil, water and crop management practices that reduce carbon emission, the first one listed is:
(i) Increasing the area under System of Rice Intensification (SRI) as an alternative to transplanted paddy.

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COLOMBIA: Resultados Promisorios del Sistema Intensivo del Cultivo del Arroz (SRI) en el Tolima

COLOMBIA: Resultados Promisorios del Sistema Intensivo del Cultivo del Arroz (SRI) en el Tolima | Selected News from SRI-Rice: Feb. 2019 **sririce.org | Scoop.it

(see pages 24-31)

Conclusiones:
El sistema SRI favorece la expresi6n del potencial de macollamiento de la planta y su crecimiento radical con respecto al trasplante convencional. El rendimiento potencial del sistema SRI es mayor, de manera que es fundamental lograr un adecuado establecimiento del cultivo.  Es posible reducir el consumo de agua en el sistema SRI.

SRI-Rice's insight:

Gabriel Garces Varon.  2018. Resultados Promisorios del Sistema Intensivo del Cultivo del Arroz (SRI) en el Tolima. Arroz 66(536): 24-31. (to see this article, go to page 24 of the attached magazine):

Conclusions: The SRI system favors the expression of the tillering potential of the plant and its radical growth with respect to conventional transplantation. The potential yield of the SRI system is greater, so it is essential to achieve an adequate establishment of the crop.It is possible to reduce the water consumption in the SRI system. 

 

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LIBERIA: Community of Hope Agriculture Project (CHAP) - Activities and Impact Update for the Ministry of Agriculture

Presentation by Robert Bimba (Community of Hope Agriculture) to the Ministry of Agriculture in  Liberia (January 11, 2019).
CHAP, an SRI pioneer in Liberia, has been helping to improve farmers' productivity since 2008. Among other activities, CHAP provides leadership in SRI/SCI extension and helps farmers adapt and access new equipment, acquire certified seed, develop local markets for rice, and trial organic inputs.

SRI-Rice's insight:

CHAP just finished working on a two year project associated with the Japanese Rice Grant (entitled ‘Economic recovery of Liberian rice farmers in Ebola affected counties’). The project, which worked with 9,000 farmers in five counties and promoted SRI, was funded by the Japanese Govt. through IFAD. See impact report on the SRI-Rice website for more information.

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