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Honduras

Department: Technical Cooperation
Project Name: Healthy Seed Potato Production Project (Honduras)
Project Description:

Potato is a staple food in Honduras, and potato production represents the primary livelihood of many of the country’s farmers. However, the country lacks a healthy seed potato production system, forcing farmers to import seed potatoes from Guatemala and other countries further afield. In addition to the high price of such imports, the supply of high-quality seed is unstable, as a result of which domestic production cannot be increased. The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, Honduras, is attempting to foster the local production of healthy seed potatoes, and disease detection technology and reproduction systems, in order to gradually reduce imports, and thereby reduce production costs and increase local farmers’ yields of fresh potato while also meeting domestic demand.

Following project appraisal, the country’s main challenge was identified as the lack of a domestic seed potato supply system. The core problem is that the agricultural sector has not established a national seed production system, nor does it have the technical capacity for seed disease certification. Given that a seed potato production program has not been developed in Honduras, local farmers must use seed imported from foreign countries, as a result of which producers have boosted direct production costs, since they are not able to guarantee the quality of such seed.

The main content of this project will include:
1.  Establishing a seed potato reproduction center and a healthy seed production and supply station.
2.  Enhancing the skills of technicians, strengthening seed reproduction technology and enhancing the cultivation techniques of seed potato producers and local farmers to form a seed potato reproduction system.
3.  Adjust the seasonal production of seed potatoes through the introduction of trial studies, seed collection groups and management training, raising production to provide a stable supply of 650 tons of seed per quarter.

Implementation Start Date: 2014/11/19
Implementation End Date: 2019/11/18
Approval Amount: USD 5,360,000
Source of Funding: Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Project Objectives: Establish, within Honduras, a healthy seed potato reproduction system and associated disease detection technologies and systems, gradually reducing volumes of imported seed so as to reduce production costs and raise production of fresh potatoes among local farmers, sufficient to meet domestic consumption needs.
Executing Agency:
  1. Taiwan ICDF
  2. Directorate of Agricultural Science and Technology (SAG-DICTA), Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock(Honduras)
  3. National Agricultural Health Service (SAG-SENASA), Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock(Honduras)
Implementation Arrangement: The TaiwanICDF will dispatch a project manager and specialists to assist the partner country to implement the project.
Current Progress:

To the end of June 2017, the following activities have been completed:

1.      The cooperating unit, DICTA, formed a project team of 10 people, and held regular monthly meetings to review work plan and control the project’s schedule, and completed Honduran National Potato Seminar for three times.

2.      Completed the set-up of seed potato production center office and basic repairs of existing roads, premises, tissue culture laboratory, pathology laboratory, two G1 greenhouse (total of 1,450 square meters), thirteen G2 tunnel net houses (total of 9,900 square meters), twenty four G3 tunnel net houses (total of 43,038 square meters), and five (8 m x 13.5 m) potato seed storage warehouse.

3.      Counseling our technical for establish potato demonstration field for 15 locations.

4.      Completed the training courses for technicians of potato micro propagation techniques, potato pathological examination. And dispatched three technicians to participate in potato pathological examination courses (DAS-ELISA, PCR and RT-PCR) and quality seed production (recognition of symptoms, management and control of pests and diseases) in CIP, Peru. And provided healthy seed potato professional training to eight Honduran technicians visiting Taiwan over two weeks.

5.      Taiwan expert was dispatched to Honduras for short-term technical counseling mission for two times.

6.      Completed farmer training for a total of 511 persons, course content included reagents for potato seed germination tests, prepared shoot-inducing reagents for potato seed germination tests and prepared ash and slaked lime (calcium) for potato seed cutting and wound healing experiments, pest control of psyllid and cultivation management.

7.      Completed 25 potato field trial demonstrations for a total of 578 persons, including trials on varieties, fertilizers and low- altitude cultivation in the winter season, and cultivation based on local conditions and pest tests.

8.      Selected producers in Marcala, Santa Elena and Cabañas to utilize a triple-grade production system, which is expected to promote seed potato cultivation among a total number of 600 farmers. To date, visited and made an inventory of 150 households for a total of 600 beneficiaries; the cultivation area is expected to be 69.125 hectares.

9.      Propagated 3,717 bottles of three mass production varieties of Puren, Pukara and tollocan, the number of seedling are 66,892 plants and have harvested 5.376 tons of G1 Seed potato.

10.  Introduced and established 7 potato varieties of Puren, Pukara, Newen, CIP3, CIP20, Tollocan and ICTA fruit, and introduced 35 lines breeding from CIP-Peru(International Potato Centro) for investigation.

Project Contact: YU-CHI CHEN
Phone: 886-2-28732323 Ext.208
E-mail: yc.chen@icdf.org.tw
Signing Date: 2014/11/19
Status: Under Implementation
Total Cost: USD 5,360,000
Grant Amount: USD 3,670,000
Projected Benefits:

It is expected that the project will:

  1. Establish a healthy seed production center.
  2. Provide capacity building and guidance in seed potato production for technical personnel, including for 10 member technicians (including a project coordinator) in the operation and management of the seed potato reproduction center, and in seed propagation techniques; and provide guidance on seed potato production to at least 130 qualified farmers.
  3. Strengthen healthy potato seed production and implement a three-grade propagation system, yielding a stable supply of 650 tons of seed per quarter.
Cooperating Stakeholders: Directorate of Agricultural Science and Technology (SAG-DICTA)
Sector: Production Sectors
Sector Item: Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing
Cooperating Country: Central America, Honduras
Project status: Projects under implementation
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  • Date:2015/1/21
  • Date Updated:2017/8/1