March 6, 2015
SVG, Moroco sign agreement for Soil Fertility Mapping Project

A cooperation agreement between the Moroccan Agricultural Technical Team and the Ministry of Agriculture has been signed for the implementation of the Soil Fertility Mapping Project here.

The project consists of eight work packages and includes technical and human capacity building within the Ministry of Agriculture as it relates to crop nutrients management.{{more}} Farmers and extension officers will be able to address the challenges associated with soil fertility, namely the use and management of fertilizers for sustainable crop production.

The signing of the agreement took place Sunday, February 15.

According to Renato Gumbs, deputy chief agricultural officer, this project enables the ministry of Agriculture to match the cropping system with the fertility status in a particular area.

“So what we intend to do under the project is to do about 3,600 soil samples throughout the country and take them to the lab and test them for the physical and chemical properties…

“When we determine these, we will produce a map showing the levels of these nutrients in different parts of the country. This information can then be used to determine your cropping system,” Gumbs explained.

Gumbs further disclosed that the project is web-based and can be accessed by anyone throughout the world via the Internet.

“So it’s not a project for internal use only. The agreement is that this project will be used by anyone,” he said.

“The other fundamental of the project is that when you have all the nutrients status super imposed on the map, you can identify a crop that you want to plant.

Once the crop is identified and the nutrients requirement of that crop is determined; once you put that crop into any location on the map, the computer automatically generates the fertilizer that you have to apply,” the deputy chief agricultural officer added.

The project will be undertaken over a four year period. It also has components of training where persons will be trained in soil testing and extension officers will also be trained on how to utilize the information from the system to advise farmers.

The training will be conducted in Morocco.