KIWI Project Piloting

Introduction: 

A meeting with Baiteshwor Rural Municipality (RM) on November 12, 2021, has emerged to support KIWI. In order to find possibilities, the team Samundra Nepal further explored how ‘High Impacts with Low investment’ is possible in the KIWI project. Based on the learning this draft proposal has been prepared.

Kiwi fruit is a Chinese gooseberry that is termed KIWI in the USA  and European countries. The KIWI fruit is known long back in the 12th century, in 20 century it spread from China to New Zealand for commercial growth. Now, KIWI has worldwide exposure. 

The geographical situation of Nepal permits KIWI production. Considering the geo-climatic variation (70m to 8848 meters in altitude), Nepal is the best place for KIWI production. Technically, KIWI can be produced commercially from 800m to 2900m. One best messages is that we have hectares of land in Nepal from 800m to 2900m suitable for KIWI production.     

Since KIWI is rich in nutrients like Vitamin C, E, and A including dietary fiber, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and copper, it has global demand and Nepal is also a country that has good demand for KIWI. 

KIWI is a fruit easy to farm in a country like Nepal. First, KIWI can grow and produce in two years and continue for 25 years. KIWI has high resistance to diseases compared to other fruits. KIWI does not need excessive water for irrigation. KIWI can be produced in the sloppy land of Nepal so it controls soil erosion.  

Gairaghar area

The meeting with the rural municipality suggested the team go with KIWI support in Baiteshwor RM. Gaira Ghar area is a deprived community that has been oppressed by caste-based discrimination from generation to generation. Though significant changes have been noticed in the Gairaghar area, the poverty level is still at the top compared to adjoining settlements of so-called higher caste people. Including, Gairaghar area is suitable for piloting the Kiwi project in Baiteshwor as it is an area having water supply, and land availability, and is also easily accessible. Moreover, the community has shown their willingness to the local government for support to implement the Kiwi project. On top of all, the maintenance cost for  Kiwi production is low compared to other types of fruits in Nepal.

Targeted area

Currently, we are targeting 12 rapini of land (about 506.25 sq. meter X 12 = 6075 sq. meter), one ropani from each household as a group. 

Beneficiaries: 

The Gairaghar area has a total of 20 households. All the households are socially deprived based on caste-based discrimination from generations. The total population of the settlement is about 120 persons, out of which around 50% are women. The main occupation of the settlement is traditional agriculture but the production of crops is not encouraging due to low productivity can not feed to family. Also, having small plots of land is not enough to grow food for the family so many villagers have left the land barren. 

Beneficiaries detail

Description Number Percentage
Beneficiary population 120
Women 60 50%
Men 60 50%
Dalit Pop. (Mijar, Bishankhe etc) 100 80%
Chhetri Pop. (Karki) 20 20%

  

Implementation approach/process

  • The project shall be implemented through a group formed under the chairmanship of a resident. 
  • The owner of the project shall be the group itself
  • Technical support on production shall be managed through Palika and Samundra Nepal
  • Samudra Nepal shall contribute to pillar construction
  • The community shall provide labor, transportation of plants 
  • Palika and Samundra Nepal shall monitor the progress from time to time, and feedback and suggestions shall be given for improvement.

Marketing:

Locals can sell KIWI in just two years of plantation. The produced KIWI can be exported to Kathmandu within 6 hours of harvest. Charikot, Jiri, Mainapokhari, and Manthali are local markets, while KIWI can be exported to international markets from Gairaghar in one day with a good market price. If we evaluate the present scenario, the market is not a problem for KIWI production. The present market price of KIWI is NRs. 350/kg to NRs. 450/kg

Expected change:

KIWI is a cash crop. Supporting KIWI in this area will help the community to internalize the modern agricultural practices in the settlement. The household income will be raised in just two years. Entrepreneurship will be developed in the settlement. Nutrients for children and elderly people will be available.  

Indicators/impacts: 

  1. Commercial KIWI farming will contribute to the livelihood of 80% of households.
  2. 70% of the total income of the household will be contributed by KIWI farming
  3. Foreign and seasonal migration of the youth from the settlement will be reduced by 80%.
  4. Plots of the fallow land will be reduced and greenery with KIWI plantation shall be increased just in a year. 

Budget: 

Supporting 12 ropanies of land cost around NRs 5,50, 000.00 in total. The project can be implemented with synergetic efforts from RM, Communities, Ward office, and Samundra Nepal with financial arrangements from Samundra Belgium. 

The tentative cost and contribution pattern      

Component Amount  Responsibility
KIWI Plants 30,000.00 Farmers
Technical input Rural Municipality
KIWI transportation 20,000.00 farmers
Land for KIWI  Community in a group
Support construction 4,00, 000.00 Samundra Nepal via Samundra Belgium
Wire/tools and others 1,00,000.00 Samundra Nepal via Samundra Belgium
Total project cost 5,50,000.00  

Future replicability

This is a piloting project which means that we want to scale up by applying the learning from the project. This project will expand our knowledge so that:

  • The possibility to extend the project to other wards of the municipality will be known to us.
  • The marketing part of the project will be further strengthened.  
  • Suitability of KIWI in Baiteshwor shall be known 
  • Our understanding will be built up to know whether KIWI farming will be really a means to change the livelihood of locals

  

Exit strategy

The local community is the owner of the project. Samundra Nepal will work as an ‘ incubator’ of the project. We won’t focus on marketing, maintenance, or other support in the project implementation phase.

Farmers will raise the fund by collecting an agreed amount till the KIWI gives production. When KIWI is going to the market, they will raise the fund by collecting a certain amount of money per kg of sale. The collected money shall be spent to replace the dead plant, trim the dead branch, clean the land, maintain the supporting pillars, install and replace the irrigation pipe, etc.

Conclusion 

This project shows a ‘low input high impact’ scenario.  Considering the quick impact of a comparatively small amount of investment on the deprived community in a synergetic effort, it is logical to implement the project in the Gairaghar area of Baiteshwor settlement.

Projects Facts

Project Title: KIWI Project Piloting
Sector: Agriculture – Nutrition
Region: Dolakha
Country: Nepal
Executing Agency: Samundra Nepal
Sponsoring NGO: Samundra Belgium
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