Local innovations identified for food & nutrition security

Supporting local innovation is key to improving food and nutrition of small-scale farmers in Africa 

Inception workshops for two new Prolinnova projects

Participants in the SULCI-FaNS inception workshop in Centre Mampuya, Senegal (Photo: Urban Fraefel)

Two new Prolinnova projects have been approved by the German development-support organisation Misereor / KZE (Katholische Zentralstelle e.V. / Catholic Central Agency for Development Aid) - namely, SULCI-FaNs (Scaling Up Local Capacity to Innovate for Food and Nutrition Security) in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ghana and Kenya; and Proli-GEAFaSa  (Promouvoir l'innovation locale dans la Gestion de l'Eau en Agriculture Familiale au Sahel / Promoting local innovation in water management in family farming in the Sahel) in Burkina Faso and Senegal.

PID with women in Ghana to improve nutritional value of local foods

Neina Naginpoan, a female small-scale farmer in northern Ghana, did her own experimentation with a local dish “wasawasa”, traditionally made from steamed yam flour, and made it instead from maize flour and powder from the yellow pulp of the dawadawa (Parkia biglobosa) fruit. She sells the food to schoolchildren and on the local market. Neina and some neighbouring women worked together with a female nutrition expert from the University of Development Studies (UDS) in Tamale and a female expert in Women in Agricultural Development and a male extension officer from the Yendi Municipal Department of Agriculture to experiment with different variations on her innovation. They sought to overcome difficulties of scarcity of dawadawa at certain times of the year and to improve the nutritional value of the dish. This 10-page report describes the process of participatory innovation development (PID) on the local food innovation.

PID on local biopesticide innovation / DPI sur un biopesticide innovatif au Burkina Faso

A group of women who grow and sell vegetables in northern Burkina Faso faced a problem with insect attacks. Because chemical pesticides are costly and possible dangerous, the women sought a non-chemical solution. Through their own experimentation, they developed a natural pesticide, called “goama”, using various locally available plants, which proved effective in controlling the insects. They engaged in joint experimentation so that they could be confident that goama was indeed effective, economic and healthy for themselves, their families, their customers and the environment.

Prolinnova completes Yr 3 of Proli-FaNS - and starts Yr 1 of SULCI-FaNS

The "Promoting local innovation for Food and Nutrition Security" (Proli-FaNS) project has come to an end. It was funded by Misereor/KZE (Germany) for somewhat more than three years (1 August 2016 to 30 September 2019) and was implemented by Prolinnova Country Platforms (CPs) in five African countries – Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, and Kenya.

Final report on Proli-FaNS in Ethiopia 2016–19

Prolinnova–Ethiopia’s final report on the Proli-FaNS (Promoting local innovation for Food and Nutrition Security) project covers the period from August 2016 to July 2019. It gives an overview of the actors involved and the activities they carried out to enhance the innovative capacities of rural communities, to support particularly women innovators and to promote collective learning in the Country Platform.

Proli-FaNS in Kenya: Year 3 report

The Prolinnova–Kenya coordinator Vincent Mariadho reports on Year 3 (2018-19) of the Proli-FaNS (Promoting local innovation in Food and Nutrition Security) project. He gives particular attention to the innovativeness of rural women and their active participation in agricultural shows and the International Farmer Innovation Day celebrations, as well as a workshop on gender mainstreaming in farmer-led research. Several newly identified innovations by women and men in Kisumu and Makueni are briefly described, e.g. for striga control and to improve the traditional “hot pot”. The report can be found here.

Proli-FaNS in Cameroon: Year 3 report

The Prolinnova-Cameroon coordinator Jean Bosco Etoa reports on activities in Year 3 (2018-19) of the Proli-FaNS (Promoting local innovation in Food and Nutrition Security) project funded by Misereor/KZE. Farmers and staff from NGOs and institutions of higher education in Cameroon have been collaborating in ways that help develop the innovative capacities of rural men and women to improve their farming and nutrition of their families. Several local innovations and cases of farmer-led joint experimentation, e.g. in beekeeping, snail farming and multiplying shallot for planting are briefly described. The 10-page report can be found here.

Proli-FaNS in Ghana: Year 3 report

Prolinnova-Ghana is proud to present its report on the third year (Aug. 2018 - Sept 2019) of the Proli-FaNS (Promoting local innovation in Food and Nutrition Security) project. It describes the newest cases of joint experimentation on local innovations in food processing and preservation and ethnoveterinary medicine to treat African swine fever, and the recognition given by district government to women innovators. It summarises achievements in the course of the three year in terms of farmer-led research, documentation of local innovation and advocacy to mainstream the PID approach. It also includes a summary of the findings of the external evaluation of the project. The report can be found here.

Local social innovation to protect trees in northern Ghana

Within the Proli-FaNS (Promoting local innovation in Food and Nutrition Security) project, partners in Prolinnova-Ghana are identifying local innovations that improve food and nutrition security directly and indirectly. The 3-page document Social innovation for protecting trees in Kabre Community in Bongo District, Ghana” describes a local institutional innovation called the Tisenaaba or “Tree Chief” that was developed by a rural community in northern Ghana to prevent destruction of trees – especially economic trees that support the livelihoods of women and their families by providing fruits, nuts and leaves.

Contact Details


Joe Nchor, SULCI-FaNS Coordinator
Association of Church-Based Development Projects (ACDEP)