In 2013, IFDC made significant progress in efforts to increase nutrient use efficiency, environmentalm protection, resource management, fertilizer policy, gender equity and human health and nutrition.
With a U.S. $78 million budget, we delivered for our stakeholders with more than 40 international development projects and research initiatives.
We began the year commemorating 35 years of continuous development in Bangladesh. In that time, Bangladeshis have effectively doubled rice production on the same amount of land using advanced water management, seeds and fertilizers. From 2011 to 2013 the 2.5 million farmers using IFDC's fertilizer deep placement doubled their rice production. Their gross margin per
hectare increased from $431 in 2012 to $587 in 2013 due to lower fertilizer costs and higher yields. Local entrepreneurs are manufacturing and retailing fertilizer briquettes, thus adding to the local economy.
Fertilizer deep placement continues to migrate from Asia into sub-Saharan Africa. It is being integrated into the agricultural systems of 17 African countries. In June, U.S. President Barack Obama visited a Feed the Future agricultural event in Senegal and was provided a demonstration on the technology.
This fertilizer technology has environmental, social and health dimensions. Early data from a 2013-2014 IFDC field experiment illustrate that fertilizer deep placement can play a role in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in rice cultivation and also reduce nutrient runoff and leaching. Within our USAID-funded project in Bangladesh, IFDC and the Walmart Foundation
are training 40,000 women on use of the technology in vegetable farming. This effort is helping increase incomes and creating more nutritious diets.
Our integrated soil management techniques are working to improve soil fertility while using resources. The practice of alternate wetting and drying helps conserve water in rice production. Our nutrient use efficiency initiatives continue to seek greater fertilizer efficiency and less waste.
However, fertilizer access and quality control remain challenges around the world. IFDC engaged in a number of studies that assessed fertilizer supply and quality, particularly in Africa. Thus we recommended policy changes necessary to make superior fertilizer more accessible within national and regional market systems. We continue to provide women farmers with greater access to technologies and training. In 2013, we trained more than 890,000 participants;43 percent were women.
Innovation drives IFDC and will set the stage for significant advances in the future. IFDC’s Virtual Fertilizer Research Center is leading the way in the rapid development of innovative new fertilizer technologies and techniques. This IFDC initiative is a platform for virtual collaboration among scientists, researchers and entrepreneurs around the world. These innovations will be highly efficient, scalable and affordable to the smallholder farmer. In 2013, we issued grants to review studies of promising directions in research.
As we commemorate our 40th anniversary in 2014, we reflect on the millions of lives that we have had the privilege and responsibility to serve. We will engage more farmers, dealers, processors traders, governments, regional economic communities and private businesses. And we will continue to advance environmental protection and nutrition security.
Thank you to our many donors and partners who have supported us. Your continued confidence in our ability to build regional agribusiness and reshape national economies has helped bring prosperity to the smallholder farmer. We also recognize the unwavering efforts of our hundreds of employees whose dedication continues to inspire.