This story was wrote by University of Missouri, College of Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources. Click here to read story.
“This is why we do what we do”, notes Peter Goldsmith, Director of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Soybean Value Chain Research, led by the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. As part of their research to look at the adoption of soybean by women headed households, collaborating researchers from the University of Missouri and Mississippi State University are handing out soybean seed packs containing 5 lbs. of soybean seed, fertilizer, inoculum and extension materials on inoculating, planting harvesting and a local recipe. The extension material consisted of a cartoon schematic shown below on one side of African women inoculating, planting and harvesting soybean. On the opposite side, inoculation instructions and a recipe were included in English (and Portuguese in Mozambique) with the lines, “Your soybeans: Eat some, Sell some: Save some for planting”.
Also provided were 600 pairs of donated pink leather gloves to women smallholder farmers in Ghana. Pulling out soybeans is tough work, particularly on the hands as most harvesting is done with bare hands. The gloves can also be used to apply fertilizer. Dr. Kerry Clark of the University of Missouri, with the help of their development office, was able to secure 600 pairs of the donated leather gloves by contacting Orscheln, a Missouri-based farm and home store. Orscheln’s buyer asked their vendors to make donations and two companies agreed. The idea for the gloves came from Soybean Innovation Lab female colleagues in the U.S., Dr. Kathleen Ragsdale and Dr. Lindsey Peterson, with Mississippi State University, who recognized the need to protect women’s hand during harvest.