The Jebel Lado Farming Project
The main objective of the project is to support economic development through training, education, and employment of the local population in large-scale commercial farming. CEDASS started ‘The Canada Farm’ at Jebel Lado in 2007 at the invitation of President Salva Kiir. CEDASS was granted the use of 1,000 acres to start the project with the permission to extend the farm in the future. CEDASS also had the support of the state government and the local community.
Initially, all equipment, inputs, and seeds had to be shipped from Canada to the site at Jebel Lado as there was no local source. CEDASS had a goal to establish a sustainable commercial farm operation. To ensure sustainability, CEDASS now sources all inputs from East Africa, greatly reducing costs and timelines.
Since 2007 the Jebel Lado farm has planted a crop each year. Year one the CEDASS farm had a mere 120 acres. In 2018 the Jebel Lado farm is now farming 2500 acres. Not all years planting was a success. Through the intervening years, war, drought, insects, birds and tribal unrest had an impact on the project, however, we have been able to provide a fairly regular supply of grains to the World Food Program (WFP) each year, in a partnership that started in 2009.
In 2017, CEDASS partnered with Green Horizon, a group from Israel with expertise in sustainable, commercial farming in conflict areas. The project has tripled in size since our partnership and we now have a fully irrigated farm operation with 300% yields due to year-round farming.
Since 2007 CEDASS has successfully trained hundreds of locals in the safe operation and maintenance of farm equipment, soil management, seed population rates and yield optimization by properly managing nutrient programs and crop rotation. The farm has 50 fulltime employees and employs approximately 100 additional casual staff at different times of the year.