Encouraging entrepreneurship with mobile grinders and seed cleaning machines
ICARDA and its national partners in Tunisia are promoting entrepreneurship and rural businesses through providing farmer association with seed cleaning and treatment machines and mobile feed grinders, locally manufactured at a low-cost. The machines and grinders offer an innovative way to increase feed production and seed quality to enhance forage production across the country. Funded by the CGIAR Research Program on Livestock, the machines have been distributed to four farmer associations in Central and North-West Tunisia supporting over 1,000 small, mixed farmers.
Due to the lack of quality forage seeds in the market and in order to avoid purchasing expensive quality seeds, small landholders in Tunisia traditionally rely on their own seeds to produce forage for their livestock. However, seeds cleaned manually usually means broken or small seeds in the product reducing its quality and subsequently resulting in low forage yields and income.
The mobile seed cleaning and treatment machine significantly increases the seed quality and can clean up to 800 kilograms of seeds per hour, depending on the type of seeds. As the machine can easily be transported around villages and sites, even remote farmers can now benefit from a significant improvement in seed yield and quality.