The MIDENO Animal Traction Programme started in 1976 as a Bilateral Technical Cooperation project of the Governments of the Republic of Cameroon and the Federal Republic of Germany under the name "Promotion of Adapted Farming Systems Based on Animal Traction" (PAFSAT). It started in Menchum Division where it was lodged in the then Wum Area Development Authority(WADA).
PAFSAT is and agricultural development project created to resolve problems arising from traditional farming practices brought about by land shortage due to extensive use under shifting cultivation, destruction of natural resources for agric production by traditional farming methods, destruction of natural forest cover, small scale production due to low labour/high labour burden, poor farm infrastructure and low farm income, high rural exodus etc.
Sustainable improvement of the farming systems of the majority of farmers in the North West Provence(now Region).
To address the identified problems of traditional farming of the North West region, the PAFSAT approach emphasizes on:
- Soil erosion control;
- Soil conservation and soil fertility improvement;
- Integration of women into agricultural development;
- Self-reliability among the farmers’ population; and
- The use of cattle and improved implements(Animal Traction) for farm work.
Animal Traction Objective
To ease agricultural working operations and enable the farmer to increase his/her labour productivity as well as the farm size without much labour bottle necks.
Since its introduction in 1976 as one of the main activities of the PAFSAT Project, over 2000 Farmer Families (i.e. 4,000 farmers including women groups and youths) in the North West Region have received training on animal traction while more than 100,000 farmers have benefitted from Animal Traction services either as an intermediate source of mechanization or as a useful source of rural transport well suited to the very poor farm to market roads in the Region.
Many youths, especially the M'Bororo and Aku youths, have taken to farming thanks to the introduction of animal traction. Also, within the farming enterprise, draught cattle are contributing a lot to soil fertility through the production of large quantities of animal manure that replaces artificial fertilizers and supplement their uses, thus reducing poverty and increasing farmers' income.
Through its unique technical character, the oxen farming activity(Animal Traction) of PAFSAT has impacted close cooperation with other related services such as the North West Regional Delegation of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Institute of Agricultural Development(IRAD Bambui Center), Presbyterian Rural Training Center-Mfonta just to mention a few. Where Animal Traction is highly used like in Wum, Ndop, Sabongari etc., rural exodus has dropped in favour of oxen farming.
Animal traction and Equipment pole
The training of farmers in the use of oxen to increase farm sizes known as animal traction has also helped to reduce the incidence of food shortages.
MIDENO has been training oxen farmers in the various Divisions through the Division of Promotion of Farming Systems formerly called PAFSAT.
In 2010, trainings took place at the Wum, Ntabah and Babungo Centres for farmers all over the Region. During MIDENO Phase II-Reformulated, 233 farmers and 230 oxen were trained.