The Nutrient-Catalyzed Agricultural Transformation (NUTCAT) Project

NUTCAT 2000

The Nutrient-Catalyzed Agricultural Transformation (NUTCAT) Project

Theme: Precision Nutrient Management
Start Date: 2021
End Date: -

Project Lead

African Plant Nutrition Institute

Supported by

OCP

Partners

Digital Earth Africa

Main Collaborators

OCP Africa; Al Moutmir

Other Collaborators

National Stakeholders

Target Cropping Systems

Wheat, Maize, and Rice cereal systems

Target Countries

Kenya, Tanzania, Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, Morocco, Senegal, Tunisia, Ghana, Nigeria

Short Description

The Nutrient-Catalyzed Agricultural Transformation (NUTCAT) project is a collection of research and training programs focused on improving precision nutrient management in Africa.

The Nutrient-Catalyzed Agricultural Transformation (NUTCAT) project is a collection of research and training programs focused on improving precision nutrient management in Africa.

NUTCAT uses a simple experimental design. Smallholder farm-scale plots (2-ha or less) are divided into two treatments (1) Optimized treatment (OT) and (2) Farmer practice (FP). The OT is defined by a team of local cereal system experts as the combination of practices and inputs that is required to produce an attainable yield target specific to the agro-ecological zone (AEZ) within the country. A single OT is deployed within an AEZ.  The FP treatment mirrors exactly the practices and inputs the farmer was planning to apply in that season.  Multiple FP treatments may be applied within an AEZ in each season.

The project is being conducted in 340 locations in nine countries.

The established plots will be maintained for a minimum of three growing seasons and will be used as the basis for three interconnected workstreams.

Workstream 1 – Improve cereal system production using precision nutrient management

Primary Objective: Establish cereal improvement teams (CIT) in each production region that will work within a systematic, ongoing process to establish, evaluate, and update best agronomic practices, that include 4R Nutrient Stewardship, to optimize cereal system production.

Workstream 2 – Remote sensing methods to evaluate grain yield potential and spatial variation in smallholder agriculture

Primary Objective: Investigate the feasibility of using remotely sensed information to describe the variation in crop performance within and between smallholder fields with a degree of reliability that enables field specific agronomic management decisions

Workstream 3 – Farmer engagement and on-farm experimentation

Primary Objective: Build a platform for engagement of farmers and value-chain stakeholders to promote farmer-centric innovation, accelerate adoption of good agronomic practices, enhance co-learning, and improve value chains

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