Profile of the Department of the Crop development
The Department is fighting against enormous and formidable challenges in order to achieve its objectives. Hence, there is need for creativity, innovativeness and industriousness in adapting and disseminating crop production technologies and provision of technical services in order to meet the increasing demand for food and cash by all households in the country. It is against this background that the Department adopted the following vision:
“Malawi with diversified crop production and sustainable crop production and productivity”
The department of Crop Development in the ministry is commissioned to:
‘Promoting appropriate crop production technologies and providing crop production technical services in order to achieve household and national food security, increased crop-based incomes, and foreign exchange earnings and import substitution’.
The mandate of Crop Development Department in the Ministry is to address the knowledge gap at frontline extension workers level and specialized crop based farmer organizations; and provide crop production technical services in order to enhance effective diffusion of technologies released by the Agricultural Technology Clearing Committee (ATCC) and provide services for farm mechanisation, migratory pest control and seed certification.
The department has an overall goal of contributing towards sustainable and diversified crop production and productivity.
Based on the SWOT analysis the department strategically developed objectives in order to achieve its goals and vision. The objectives include:
To improve capacity of the department in services delivery.
Technical Sections within the Department
The department implements activities through the following technical sections:
a) Farm mechanization
Farm mechanization aims at reducing drudgery of farm work in the country comprises two schemes namely
These two schemes are geared towards overcoming challenges encountered with the use of hand tools and implements in land preparation.
The Vision of the Department on Farm Mechanization
Increased land and labour productivity through:
Tractor Hire Scheme
Current Status Inventory
The department implemented activities with underlying principles of Government’s development strategy as stipulated and aligned in Agricultural Sector Wide Approach (ASWAP) and Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS). The strategies included:
An operator busy ploughing with his Mahindra tractor in one of the client
The department has established a horticulture demonstration centre at Natural Resources College to train both staff and farmers.