Programme Index Listing

Location
Bangladesh
Main implementer
Swisscontact
Other implementers
GTZ Intl Services
Donor
DFID, SDC, CIDA, EKN
Duration
2008 - 2013
Total budget
USD $50 million
Annual budget
USD $10 million

Project description / objective

To increase employment and income for women and men in rural and urban areas of Bangladesh through more broad-based and sustainable pro-poor growth.

Katalyst Phase 2's objective was to reach real scale in its interventions and sectors. It managed to achieve its substantially larger impact targets. The budget was increased by 70 per cent over Phase 1.

Whereas Katalyst Phase 1 worked in selected geographical areas, Phase 2 went beyond regional boundaries and switched its focus to addressing production, processing and trade of commodities, as well as other goods or services on a nationwide scale.

The focus narrowed to eight core industries and eight cross-cutting sectors. The focus was on moving from piloting interventions to scaling up and expanding successful business models and to achieving systemic change.

Market system focus

Maize

  • Promote a profitable cropping pattern and expand contract farming systems
  • Enable farmers to access information, techniques and incentives to take up maize cultivation as a new crop
  • Build year-round supply to make maize attractive to the livestock feed industry

Vegetables

  • Increase vegetable farmers' competitiveness by increasing their productivity and access to a high price market
  • Increase vegetable production for nutritional benefits as well as to meet growing demand in urban communities and export markets

Fish

Shift from a regional to a nationwide market focus on selected high value species which can help achieve higher profitability and productivity for farmers.

Jute

Support the jute industry to develop sustainable market mechanisms that contribute to increasing its competitiveness through improved quality, productivity and market access. These changes aim to add to the growing demand for jute as well as the income earned from jute production.

Potato

  • Increase the competitiveness of small farmers by reducing costs and by cultivating industrial varieties
  • Increase potato production, providing nutritional benefits as well as meeting the growing demand in urban communities

Prawn

  • Improve knowledge around prawn production and post-harvest handling techniques
  • Improve access to good quality inputs
  • Focus on combatting the threat of contamination by improving conduct and introducing traceability into the prawn market system

Furniture

  • Increase the competitiveness of furniture SMEs and carpentry households for the domestic and export market
  • Whilst responding to market demand, the firms would adhere to:
    - compliance standards
    - environment friendly measures
    - ensuring the participation of women, as and where applicable, especially through the introduction of soft furnishing alongside furniture retailing

Tourism

  • Increase the number of domestic and international tourists in Bangladesh
  • Increase their spending by making Bangladeshi destinations more accessible, diversified and complete
  • Involve the poor in the mainstream tourism sector to ensure improved income opportunity

ICT for Farmers

  • Making relevant agricultural information (crop protection, soil improvement, disease control etc.) easily accessible for farmers
  • Focus on addressing the information and services needs of farmers, entrepreneurs and the wider community of rural Bangladesh

Agri-input services

Irrigation, fertiliser and seeds

  • Fertiliser: stimulate the latent demand for a product with the potential to secure livelihoods and growth through the replenishment of much-needed soil nutrients and increased land productivity. To also develop supply-side capacities and reduce barriers to entry and scale-up
  • Irrigation: encourage small and marginal poor farmers to adopt efficient irrigation practices with a view to increasing output and reducing wastage of underground water

Programme intervention (examples)

Maize

  • Expanding and promoting the contract farming system of maize and improving the knowledge of agro-input suppliers
  • Promoting profitable cropping patterns
  • Promoting short-term storage arrangements for year-round availability

Vegetables

  • Promoting profitable cropping patterns through seed companies and micro-finance institutions
  • Continued work to promote training of vegetable seed vendors / retailers by seed companies
  • Promoting appropriate crop protection methods and products

Fish

  • Promotion of high value commercial species and quality inputs
  • Initiating and improving export market entry points and linkages

Jute

  • Improving access to inputs and technology
  • Promoting the upgrading of machines in jute mills
  • Improving market access for Jute Diversified Products (JDP) producers

Potato

  • Improving access to, and use of, quality inputs and industrial varieties
  • Promoting cultivation of industrial varieties
  • Improving post-harvest management

Prawn

  • Extended prawn farming to new areas
  • Ensured compliance with international standards

Furniture

  • Improved marketing practices for domestic and export market
  • Increased safety and compliance in furniture production practices
  • Improving access to inputs and technology
  • Promoting the upgrade of machines in jute mills
  • Improving market access for JDP producers

Tourism

  • Development and promotion of pro-poor tourism products bundled with destination-specific flagship products
  • Access to information on destinations and activities for tourists

ICT for farmers

  • Partnership with Grameenphone and Banglalink to expand the network of community information centres and develop E-krishok and Jigyasha services
  • Development of online fertiliser recommendation software providing information tailored to location-specific, soil test results
  • Facilitation of agricultural traders' associations and their links to public extension services

Agri-input services

Seed

  • Introduction of quality seed mini packets to farmers

Fertiliser

  • Increasing awareness around balanced doses and the quality of fertilisers
  • Increasing availability of quality fertilisers
  • Facilitating an industry-friendly regulatory framework

Irrigation

  • Improving information on water management practices
  • Building the capacity of pump manufacturers

Notable results (systemic change, poverty impact)

Katalyst Phase 2 helped between 1.7 – 2.3 million farmers to improve their competitiveness by using its services (the exact number depends on which estimate one takes on overlapping farmers).

By December 2012 the programme had:

  • created between $147 - $175 million additional income for small farmers and business
  • 20,300 service providers, addressed directly or indirectly by Katalyst, showed a sustainable change in performance, innovation, capacity, relationships and/or investments

Maize

  • An impact evaluation in 2013 found 5,800 farmers were impacted directly, and 23,400 indirectly
  • Incomes increased $187 per year (direct) / $ 78 per year (indirect)
  • Figures from ongoing partner monitoring suggests the number of direct beneficiaries had grown to 10,000 farmers by 2015, with a likely associated increase in indirect benefits

Vegetables

  • Katalyst’s major partner in mobile seed vending (MSV) reports that over 1000 vendors have now been through their formal training programme and they see it as a vital part of their business strategy for reaching small farmers. They are continuing to expand the model to reach new geographies.
  • A seed company which did not partner with Katalyst reports how proliferation of knowledge is occurring through staff turnover and they are now incorporating formal MSV training in order to attempt to reach 40 – 45 per cent of small farmers through MSVs.

Agri-input services

  • 458,000 farmers benefited from using affordable vegetable seed mini packets

Fish

  • 16 leading Bangladeshi fish hatcheries started sourcing better quality brood from Vietnam and the Philippines

ICT for farmers

  • Farmer information services from Grameenphone and Banglalink have become well established
  • ICT agri-helpline Krishi Jigasha 7676, reached out to 900,000 farmers across Bangladesh
  • Over 90 per cent benefited from this access to information that enabled them to counter or remedy identified pest, disease and animal health concerns. Value of income saved ranged from US$ 12 – 240 per farmer. 60 per cent of callers surveyed were poor (<$2.5/day)


[uploaded March 2019]

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