Rice and fish are key elements of the diet and major agricultural production sectors in Myanmar. Rice-fish systems (RFSs) encompass a spectrum of farming and fishing practices, from traditional capture of fish in rice-dominated landscapes through to controlled farming of fish in rice fields. Rice farming covers approximately 8 million ha and involves more than 5 million rural households. Myanmar governments of the recent past favored “command and control” based policies that discouraged rice farmers from diversification and making production decisions based on market demand. Such policies have constrained crop- and land-use diversity, as well as opportunities for poverty reduction. Recent policy shifts are now presenting a window of opportunity for developing and implementing diversified and productive rice-fish systems. Such developments would contribute to overarching policy goals of the government for poverty reduction, addressing under-nutrition and rural development. The overall aim of the project is to improve the productivity and profitability of rice-fish systems in Myanmar. The project will benefit small-scale rice farming households, and fishers, by diversifying production in rice-based farming systems and landscapes, enhancing resilience of rice-based farming systems and delivering increased farmer incomes, improved food and nutrition security and enhanced gender equity.

Related sustainable development goals: