Better measuring agricultural cost of production in Zambia
Improving statistics on agricultural cost of production is one of the priorities of African countries, which requested assistance on this topic in several regional and international meetings. As a response, the Global Office published Guidelines on the collection and compilation of agricultural cost of production statistics in 2016 and the African Development Bank organized two regional seminars the same year, where countries specified their technical assistance needs on this topic.
In order to kick-start country-specific activities, the Global Office organized a meeting with officers from Zambia’s Central Statistical Office, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries in Lusaka on 6-7 March 2017. The output of these discussions was a detailed technical assistance program on agricultural cost of production, to be implemented from April to September 2017.
Activities will include: improving Zambia’s agricultural survey in order to better measure agricultural costs of production, pilot-testing the new proposed survey modules and the delivery of a data compilation tool developed by the Global Office for Zambia to facilitate the compilation of indicators directly from survey data. At its request, the Global Office will also assist in expanding the country’s data collection on costs of production to additional crops, and in improving the coverage of livestock products.
Franck Cachia, Statistician, Global Office
AMIS supports private grain stocks survey in Bangladesh
The Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS), conducted a nationally representative private grain stocks survey, financially and technically supported by the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS) project. . The data collection was carried out between 3 and7 March 2017 and the results of the survey are expected to be released towards the end of April. The survey aims to collect data on stocks for rice, wheat and maize from 8,000 sampled households and 300 millers.
Prior to launching the field data collection, two levels of training were conducted, for master trainers and field enumerators. In particular, the training of master trainers was inaugurated in the presence of higher officials from the Government including the Director General of BBS as well as the FAO representative for Bangladesh. During their speech, the officials stressed the importance of conducting this private food grain stock survey. Almost all the speakers appreciated the support provided by AMIS and pointed out that this survey, which is the first in its kind in Bangladesh, will provide good grounds for BBS to include the stock survey in its regular survey program.
Experts from FAO headquarters, the FAO country office and BBS supervised the data collection in selected districts during the first two days. This provided the opportunity to point out important areas that need more emphasis, and suggestions were made to improve the data collection exercise.
Guidelines for designing and implementing grain stock surveys were recently published by the capacity-building component of the AMIS project in collaboration with FAO. These guidelines were prepared on the basis of assessments of the methods currently used by countries to produce data on stocks, and provide examples and tools for countries wishing to develop their own stock survey programmes.
Yakob Seid, Statistician, AMIS