On-Farm Implementation and Demonstration of Integrated Sustainable Agriculture and Livestock Production Systems for Small-Scale Farmers in Micronesia

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer/Rancher
Funds awarded in 2009: $38,220.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2011
Region: Western
State: Federated States of Micronesia
Principal Investigator:
Dr. Virendra M. Verma
Northern Marianas College

Annual Reports


  • Fruits: bananas
  • Vegetables: sweet potatoes, eggplant
  • Animals: swine


  • Animal Production: feed/forage, feed formulation, feed rations, manure management
  • Crop Production: continuous cropping, multiple cropping, nutrient cycling, organic fertilizers
  • Education and Training: demonstration, display, extension, farmer to farmer, focus group, mentoring, on-farm/ranch research, participatory research, study circle, technical assistance
  • Farm Business Management: whole farm planning, feasibility study
  • Pest Management: cultivation, prevention, sanitation
  • Production Systems: integrated crop and livestock systems
  • Soil Management: green manures, organic matter, composting
  • Sustainable Communities: public participation, sustainability measures

    Proposal summary:

    The Federated States of Micronesia is made up of 607 small islands spread over a million square miles of the Western Pacific Ocean. However, the total land area is only about 271 square miles. The islands of Micronesia are striving towards self-sufficiency while mindful of high malnutrition and an enormous trade imbalance attributable to importing foods. Very little food crops are cultivated at the local level and most of the foods available at local markets are imported. Due to high shipping costs, these are very expensive and unaffordable for average local people. And even after paying high prices, people are not able to get fresh produce because of long transportation time. Although current agriculture programs are mostly on subsistence level, food crops and swine production are considered primary and important industries in Micronesia. Almost every household on the island has swine production operations with capacities that range from a few animals to about twenty-five animals and backyard gardening. These operations may be small, but they are numerous. Local people mostly rely on banana, breadfruit and taro as main sourcse of food for themselves and also for livestock; however, their needs are usually much greater than the available food supplies. Taro and pigs are part of many traditional and cultural practices. Value of taro and pigs is closely related with demands during funerals, annual feasts and daily community functions and activities. To meet this ever-increasing demand for food and feed, there is a crucial need to increase agricultural production by generating the ability to successfully raise livestock and grow food and feed crops for sustenance by training local farmers in appropriate and skillful use of sustainable and integrated agriculture systems.

    This project is specifically designed to implement and demonstrate integrated farming systems involving crop and swine production by using local resources, thus providing a sustainable alternative for the benefit of small-scale farmers and the environment.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    The main objectives of the project are:

    1) Develop, implement and demonstrate cropping systems for multipurpose crops to maximize production in sustainable manner;

    2) Develop, implement and demonstrate swine production system based on locally available resources for small-scale farmers;

    3) Develop, implement and demonstrate simple techniques to optimize the use of different components of crops for different end purposes, such as food, feed and nutrients for plants;

    4) Implement and demonstrate recycling of animal wastes and crop residues through composting;

    5) Educate and train farmers and rural communities in on-farm implementation of sustainable agriculture systems through demonstrations, training workshops and field days;

    6) Develop, publish and distribute sustainable farming and swine production guides, easy-to-understand handout, and informative brochures in English and local language; and

    7) Record, develop and telecast project’s success stories in English and local language.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.