Enhancing livelihood opportunities of smallholders in Asia: Linking smallholder sweet sorghum farmers to the bioethanol industry

Published on 24 November 2011

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Start Date: 11 December 2009 | End Date: 10 December 2013


The proposal focuses on sweet sorghum; a feedstock that does not compete with food production but produces food as well as fuel, and may even enhance food production by stimulating increased input use and crop management intensity.  Providing competitive, remunerative options suitable to sweet sorghum cultivation and marketing by dryland poor will help ensure that the biofuels revolution aids the sustainable development of the poor in the drylands, rather than bypassing or marginalizing them. 

The project aims to demonstrate a successful model for up and out scaling the sweet sorghum cultivation for ethanol production to increase the farmers’ incomes, without compromising the food or fodder needs of farmers. This paves way for most efficient whole plant utilization of sweet sorghum, a promising crop for the tropics particularly in the light of climate change. The project aims to increase the area of sweet sorghum from negligible area at present to 1500 ha by the end of the project directly benefiting at least 2000 farmers in each participating country (India, Thailand and China) through centralized model (within 50 km radius) and additional 200 ha each in India and Thailand through decentralized model (beyond 50 km radius) benefiting 200 farmers additionally in each country.

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