voices from the fields in nicaragua

Ignacio, a pastor of a local Roman Catholic church and father of eight children, lives on the banks
of the Coco River in eastern Nicaragua.

In 2012 he was introduced to AMC’s food securityprogramming and became very interested in this effort.saf11 He expressed his desire to serve as aFarming and Livestock Promoter in his community and was chosen along with three others toreceive training. Ignacio then shared his newfound knowledge with four other farmers in his
community.In 2014, AMC’s agriculture technicians taught thepromoters about the SRI method of cultivating rice,
explaining that it is more efficient, uses less seed, and requires less weeding. The following year, Ignacio
eagerly conducted a trial on a 5 x 5 square-meter area next to a plot on which he used traditional methods of
cultivating rice. Through this experiment, he discoveredthat the rice plants thrived using the SRI method, that
fertilizer was easier to apply, and that there was betterweed control.

saf22Most importantly, yields were far greater,with a harvest of 50 lbs. in the SRI plot and only 30 lbs. in the traditionally planted plot of the same size. Inaddition, the SRI plot required fewer inputs. This year Ignacio planted an area of 25 square metersusing the SRI method. He has been able to show others firsthand the success he has experienced with this method, and he says that, as a result, others are now beginning to implement SRI as well. Ignacio reports, “Today I give thanks to God for giving me an opportunity to learn more and to help other families in my community. I give much thanks to AMC for selecting me to participate in their field school and in the SRI experimentation program.”

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