Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI)
Plant Clinics Help Farmers to Lose Less and Grow More
Plantwise is a global programme, led by CABI, to increase food security and improve rural livelihoods by reducing crop losses. This is achieved by establishing networks of local plant clinics, run by trained plant doctors, where farmers can find practical plant health advice. Plant clinics are reinforced by the Plantwise Knowledge Bank, a portal with online and offline plant health information, including diagnostic resources, pest management advice and front-line pest data.
Plantwise supports climate-smart agriculture by helping farmers reduce loses and therefore increase their agricultural productivity and incomes without using any additional land or inputs. This in turn improves farmers’ resilience to climate shocks. In this way, Plantwise supports countries in meeting their national food security and development goals.
To date, Plantwise has reached over 4.5 million farmers in 34 countries with actionable plant health information. External evaluations have shown that 92% of farmers visiting plant clinics are satisfied with the advice they are given; on average they share the information with 4 other farmers; and 79% saw their crop yields increase after the plant clinic visit.
Farmers see the benefits. “A few years ago, I would make [ZMK] 5,000-6,000 per year,” comments Kenny Mwansa, a farmer from Rufunsa District, Zambia. “Last year, I got about [ZMK] 15,000. I have never missed any plant clinic session. I have been very committed, very faithful, because I have seen the benefits.”
Government institutions also value Plantwise, and in many cases have embedded it into their national plant health frameworks.
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