Published: 2012-04-20


ECHO is pleased to announce the availability of a new book titled Agricultural Options for Small-Scale Farmers: A Handbook for Those Who Serve Them. This book, made possible through the support of the Tyndale House Foundation, is filled with practical options for those working to assist smallholder farmers and urban gardeners in the tropics and subtropics.

Many of you are already familiar with ECHO’s previously published book, Amaranth to Zai Holes (A-Z ), a compilation of the first 51 issues of EDN . Agricultural Options for Small-Scale Farmers is a sequel to A-Z , with content drawn primarily from issues 52 through 100 of EDN , but also containing updated information on selected portions of A-Z . The sequel also features technical notes, written by experienced practitioners, on agricultural systems that they have implemented in the field and that have been adopted by thousands of farmers.

 

 

Foundational concepts, such as the weaving of agriculture and community development, are covered in the first chapter. Chapter 1 also contains insights on research to be undertaken, as well as factors and issues to consider, before investing valuable resources in specific project interventions. Chapters 2 through 8 build on that perspective, covering practical, project-oriented options grouped under topics that include the restoration of unproductive soils; coping with scarce rainfall and crop pests; underutilized crops for human nutrition; diversification of small farms; seed multiplication and storage; and agriculture-related human health issues.

The new book will be available for purchase from ECHO’s bookstore (www.echobooks.org ). It is priced at $19.95 per copy. For now, we only have printed copies available. We plan to offer an electronic download in the future and will announce that in EDN when it becomes available. A-Z continues to be available online (www.ECHOcommunity.org ) and in our bookstore.

It is our desire that the new book will provide helpful perspective and practical project options that, ultimately, will lead to improved livelihoods of smallholder farmers around the world. Please let us know if any particular practice or technique covered within its pages contributes to your efforts to serve the poor, or if you have related items to share for possible mention in EDN.