Agricultural practices in the Mai-Ndombe province in the Democratic Republic of Congo are mainly based on slash-and-burn agriculture, a traditional practice of cutting and burning forests to release fertile soil to continue growing crops, eroding the soil more and more. A fallow period must be provided so that the eroded soil can recover.
Due to the increased population, there are practically no more fallow periods. This results in deforestation and soil degradation in the vital Congo basin.
The province of Mai-Ndombe currently hosts 22 forestry concessions, but as elsewhere in the country, there are no market systems in place that promote the socio-economic well-being of local communities, which limits the potential for reforestation and a reduction of deforestation
Techniques for combating deforestation will be applied. In addition, sustainable forest management will be promoted in which biodiversity is preserved. Agroforestry will also be used for economic development.
Local communities will learn to sustainably manage the resources in the forests on which their livelihoods depend. They will also be encouraged to use various sustainable agricultural value chains, in particular cocoa, honey and other non-wood products.
Approximately 4,000 hectares of the Basengele forest will be protected from deforestation. 750 members of the Basengele community will be trained and educated in climate change and sustainable forest management. Another 350 farmers will produce cacao and other forestry products using climate-smart agroforestry techniques. A minimum of three containers of sustainable cacao will be sold on national and international new markets.