Integrated Chia and Oyster Mushroom System for Sustainable Food Value Chain in Africa (CHIAM)

International cooperation and solidarity must prevail if we really want to eradicate starvation and undernutrition of billions of people in the world, and induce a transition to a sustainable future for its citizens. The application of research findings and knowledge are fundamental to improve our approaches to food and nutrition security, while mitigating climate changes. By the improvement existing farming systems in Africa may enhance climate resilient food production and food security for the sufficient nutrition of the growing population of Africa.

Horizon 2020 ERA‐NET‐Cofund ‘Food Systems and Climate” (FOSC) calls for research and innovation that support scientifically excellent, trans-continental research, development and innovation projects that lead to sustainable and resilient food systems in Europe and beyond.

CHIAM aims to develop a climate-smart solution for sustainable food systems that directly addresses these challenges which will be created by the improvement of new agricultural technologies and a redesigned network of the existing African agri-food value chain to increase resilience, sustainability, and circularity. The deployment of the integrated chia-mushroom- pig-biogas value chain contributes to the diversification and resilience of African food systems against the impacts of climate change.

The adoption of new and innovative technologies into the African food value chain is intended and will be accomplished through four interlinked and multidisciplinary research and technology objectives;

  • Breeding and spreading high productivity chia crops
  • Improving mushroom cultivation technologies in Africa
  • Development of novel chia and oyster mushrooms fortified local food products
  • Development and demonstration of the climate-smart farming

CHIAM consortium will contribute to

  • Promotion of innovative technology deployment to build sustainable and resilient food value chains influenced by changing food needs and patterns, and to develop better efficiency of the inputs and outputs of food systems;
  • Improved resilience and reduced volatility in agri-food production and food markets to sustainably improve food security in the context of climatic variation;
  • Reduced food losses under climate change, including novel approaches to valorise side streams and reduce food waste.

The activities to achieve the CHIAM objectives are based on a multi-stakeholder, multinational and interdisciplinary, demand-driven approach that covers a diversity of stakeholders (small holder farmers and farmers’ organizations, feed producer associations and agricultural extension officers; as well as research organizations, consumer organizations and the public). This will be implemented by an international and inter-sectoral consortium from Kenya, Germany, Morocco, Egypt, Hungary, and Algeria. This consortium comprises four Research Performing Organizations (RPOs) from Africa, two RPOs from Europe, one SME from Africa and one SME from Europe. This mixture of partners ensures the good mixture of knowledge and experience. Partners complement each other and their knowledge ensures their ability to reach the project objectives.

CHIAM Consortium