Smallholder Adaptive Farming and Biodiversity Network (SAFBIN)

SAFBIN is an action research programme from Caritas Organisations to address the issues of climate change and food security of smallholder farmers in South Asia. The programme aiming to achieve SDG 2, is inspired by the achievements and mutual learning process of the Caritas Partners in a successful previous phase of regional programme under the European Union Global Programme on Agriculture Research for Development (ARD).

SAFBIN is a multi-dimensional and multi-sector programme aimed to address the agricultural development challenges of developing and emerging countries. The innovative models piloted by the smallholder farmers from five rainfed Agro-Ecosystems (AES) in South Asia will be scalable and replicable in all similar Agro-Ecosystems. This programme will primarily contribute in achieving Sustainable Development Goal 2 of United Nations: “End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture in South Asia”.

The overall programme will benefit about 40000 people living in 165 villages of 21 districts in Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan. The first phase of the programme will be implemented from April, 2018 in 95 villages of 11 districts, benefiting about 22000 people.

SAFBIN programme follows farmer led collective on-farm adaptive research, farming system and partnership approaches to empower the smallholder farmers in:

Caritas organisations part of this initiative are the official national organisations of the Catholic Bishops' Conference for social development in their respective countries. They are also members of Caritas Internationalis in Rome, which is a global confederation of 165 Catholic organisations working in humanitarian emergencies and international development. Implementing partners in South Asia are the members of Caritas Asia, which is also a strategic partner of this programme.

Caritas India, Caritas Bangladesh, Caritas Nepal and Caritas Pakistan will be implementing this programme in South Asia with the support of Caritas Austria and Caritas Switzerland. They will collaborate and partner with global and national research institutions, national agricultural research system and universities to implement this programme.


  • Effect of different sowing methods on the yield and yield components of rice

  •   | 
  • 01/04/2016

Md. Shamim Ahmad completed his BSc thesis at the Department of Fisheries at the University of Rajshahi, Bangladesh.


The performance of rice is related to cultivation practices like the method selected to transplant rice seedlings. In the context of climate change, resource effective rice production is essential. Line transplanting can reduce the cultivation costs, pests and insects as well as increase rice yields.

The objective of this trial was to assess the performance of rice cultivated from different transplantation methods and to identify the most suitable practice to achieve yield increase.

A trial was conducted in the upazillas[1] Baraigram (Natore district), Paba (Rajshahi district) and Patnitala (Naogaon district), Bangladesh. Trial plots were established on farms participating in SAF-BIN project. Two treatments (T1: line planting; T2: random planting) were arranged in a randomized complete block design with three replications. The variety BRRIDhan56, a short duration drought tolerant/escaping rice variety, was used. Into individual plots (6m x 4m) rice seedlings (21- 25 days) were transplanted at a density of 3-4 seedlings/hill. Fertilization (180kg/ha urea, 75kg/ha TSP[2], 90kg/ha MOP[3], 60kg/ha gypsum) and pest management were conducted as necessary. Data on growth duration (days), fertile tillers/hill, thousand grain weight (TGW) and yield (from 10m²) (t/ha) was collected and analyzed.  

Results show that there was no influence of location or treatment on the average number of fertile tillers/hill (Baraigram: 11.7; Paba: 11.4; Patnitala: 11.1; T1: 11.8; T2: 11). Treatment had no significant influence on TGW (T1: 23.2g; T2: 23.18) but location did (Baraigram: 22.9g; Paba: 23.1g; Patnitala: 23.6g). Irrespective of location, line planting produced higher grain yields than random planting (T1: 4.65t/ha; T2: 4.45t/ha). Treatment had no significant effect on growth duration in all locations (Baraigram: 111.38 days; Paba: 107.7; Patnitala: 108.23).

This trial has shown the advantage of line transplanting and created awareness of the benefits of planting fewer seedlings to reduce cultivation costs. Line transplanting must be scaled up among rice growing farmers.

[1] a geographical region in Bangladesh used for administrative purposes, sub-units of districts. (Wikipedia, 2015: access date 19/10/2015.

[2] Triple superphosphate, phosphorus (P) source

[3] mureate of potash, potassium (K) source