Evaluation report for CABI's E-Zaraat pilot project in Vehari district, Punjab, Pakistan. The project aims to provide more efficient agricultural extension services to smallholder farmers throughout the district with a mind to expanding the service to the entire province of Punjab. The E-Zaraat system of extension focuses on the role of communication technologies and consists of 4 components: A farmers helpline, a text messaging service, a voice message advice service and an information management web-portal for agricultural extension staff, accessed through tablet computers.
The report shows that E-Zaraat has had some positive effects on extension services and farmer livelihoods in the pilot district. In particular, farmers' profits have seen a marked increase for both wheat and cotton crops, both in real terms and in relation to control group farmers, despite a national drop in yields during the trial period. The report concludes with potential improvements to the system and outlines possible strategy for upscaling the scheme to the entire province.
Mahrukh Siraj; Atiq-ur-Rehman. E-Zaraat Evaluation Report. CABI, Wallingford, UK (2015) 41 pp.