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Bangladesh

Bangladesh has great potential for agriculture-led growth and food security. Rice production has tripled over the last 30 years. The extreme ($1.25 per day) poverty rate fell from about 59 percent in 2000 to about 43 percent in 2010. Forty-eight percent of Bangladeshis are employed in the agriculture sector and a large majority of the rural population is involved in fisheries.

  • 2.4 MILLION
    Producers using new technology and practices with Feed the Future’s help in FY16
  • $321 MILLION
    New income earned by Feed the Future farmers in FY16 from agricultural sales
  • 1.1 MILLION
    Children under 5 reached with nutrition help in FY16
  • 392 THOUSAND
    Hectares tended with improved technologies or management practices in FY16

Impact

  • 16 PERCENT
    Reduction in the prevalence of poverty in the areas where Feed the Future has worked since 2011
  • 12 PERCENT
    Reduction in the prevalence of stunting in children under 5 years old in the areas where Feed the Future has worked since 2011

Key Achievements

Feed the Future helped more than 2.4 million farmers and other producers applied new technologies and management practices for the first time. Additionally, Feed the Future-supported farmers and producers increased the value of their agricultural product sales by more than $321 million.

Feed the Future also leveraged nearly $685,000 in new private investment in food and agriculture in Bangladesh. With the initiative’s help, producers applied improved technologies and management practices on nearly 392,000 hectares of land. Also, through efforts like Feed the Future, the U.S. Government reached nearly 1.1 million children under 5 years old to improve their nutrition.

In areas where Feed the Future works in Bangladesh, poverty fell by 16 percent from 40.5 percent in 2011 to 34 percent in early 2015. Additionally, childhood stunting fell by 12 percent across the two major divisions where Feed the Future targets efforts in Bangladesh, from 36.9 percent in 2011 to 32.3 percent in 2014.

Source

These results reflect data from USAID, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of the Treasury (through the International Fund for Agricultural Development and Global Agriculture and Food Security Program) reported into Feed the Future’s central monitoring system for fiscal year 2016 (FY16). Impact data for poverty statistics comes from a 2015 population-based survey by the International Food Policy Research Institute. Impact data for stunting statistics are derived from the 2014 Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey. For more information on the indicators above, please view our Feed the Future Indicator Handbook. All dollar amounts are listed in U.S. dollars.

Strategy

  • Increase on-farm productivity and generate income
  • Increase investment in value chains
  • Improve nutrition status for mothers and children
  • Enhance policy and planning capacity
  • Enhance agriculture innovation capacity
  • Scale proven technologies to smallholder farmers
  • Promote gender integration in agriculture and increase women’s empowerment
  • Coordinate and collaborate with other U.S. Government initiatives in the country

Zones of Influence in Bangladesh

Map of Bangladesh
  • 20 districts in the Southern Delta region

Background Stats

  • 28.4 MILLION
    Number of people living in Feed the Future target regions in Bangladesh
  • 7.1 PERCENT
    Annual GDP growth; agriculture accounts for 14.8% of added value (World Bank, 2016)
  • 65 PERCENT
    Percentage of population living in rural Bangladesh (World Bank, 2016)
  • 34 PERCENT
    Percentage of people living in poverty in Feed the Future target regions in 2015

Value Chains

  • Rice
  • Horticulture
  • Fisheries
A hardworking man unloads bananas at the Sadarghat boat terminal in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Approach

Bangladesh faces both opportunities and challenges for agriculture-led growth and food security. Since 2000, its gross domestic product has grown at an average rate of six percent. Rice production has tripled over the last 30 years. The extreme ($1.25 per day) poverty rate fell from about 59 percent in 2000 to about 43 percent in 2010. Forty-eight percent of Bangladeshis are employed in the agriculture sector and a large majority of the rural population is involved in fisheries. However, Bangladesh remains the most densely populated country in the world, with 161 million people living in a land area roughly the size of Iowa. Poverty, lack of access to agricultural land, and poor eating habits contribute to the country having some of the highest rates of undernutrition and child stunting in the world.

More than 28 million people live in Feed the Future’s target regions in Bangladesh, where food security and nutrition face considerable challenges associated with scarce water resources, a rising sea level, vulnerability to extreme shocks, and changing weather patterns. Population growth, urbanization and soil and natural resource depletion have led to degradation of Bangladesh’s land, water bodies, wetlands, and forests and pose a significant threat to its agriculture sector.

Gender-related factors further complicate food insecurity and undernutrition: Women are heavily engaged in agriculture but do not have access to extension services or other inputs like seeds and fertilizer. They are also often the last to eat at mealtimes. Nonetheless, Bangladesh is making progress. The under-5 mortality rate has declined by more than 50 percent since 1993, and 88 percent of children under 5 receive vitamin A supplementation twice a year through government-led campaigns. Poverty and child stunting have dropped within Feed the Future target regions. Consistent with the Government of Bangladesh’s priorities, Feed the Future focuses on increasing rice production while helping farmers diversify into higher-value, nutrient-dense commodities such as horticulture and fish.

Activities

Feed the Future supports the following programs, partnerships and organizations in Bangladesh.

  • Abiotic Stress Tolerant Rice and Wheat
  • Accelerating Capacity for Monitoring and Evaluation
  • Agricultural Extension Support Activity
  • Agricultural Statistics/Marketing Information Systems
  • Agricultural Value Chains
  • Agriculture Biotechnology Support Project Phase II
  • Agriculture Infrastructure Development with Local Government Engineering Department
  • Agriculture Mechanization and Irrigation
  • Agro-Inputs Project
  • Aquaculture for Income and Nutrition
  • Borlaug Higher Education Agricultural Research and Development (BHEARD) Program
  • Cereal Systems Initiative for South Asia – Bangladesh
  • Cold Chain Bangladesh Alliance
  • Enabling Agricultural Trade
  • Feed the Future Asia Innovative Farmers
  • Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Aquaculture and Fisheries
  • Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Assets and Market Access
  • Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Horticulture
  • Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Integrated Pest Management
  • Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Reduction of Post-Harvest Loss
  • Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Sustainable Intensification
  • Feed the Future Partnering for Innovation
  • Global Agriculture and Food Security Program
  • Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition
  • Golden Rice (International Rice Research Institute)
  • Heat Resilient Maize for South Asia
  • Integrating Gender and Nutrition Within Agriculture Extension Services
  • Integrated Agriculture and Health-Based Interventions
  • Livestock Production for Improved Nutrition
  • Loan Portfolio Guarantee Program
  • Mobile Solutions Technical Assistance and Research (mSTAR)
  • National Agricultural Technology Project
  • National Food Policy Capacity Strengthening Program
  • Nutritious Rice Value Chain Innovations in Bangladesh
  • Organizational Capacity Development – UNOPS
  • Policy Research and Strategy Support Program for Food Security and Agricultural Development in Bangladesh
  • Rice and Diversified Crops
  • Risk Management for Food Security in Bangladesh – Sanitary and Phytosanitary Food Safety Project
  • SHIKHA Project (Nutrition)
  • South Asia Biosafety Program
  • Strengthening Partnerships, Results and Innovations in Nutrition Globally
  • Trade Facilitation Activity
  • USAID Food for Peace Programs
  • USDA Food for Progress Programs
  • Women’s Empowerment Activity

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