Photo: LI-BIRD Photo Bank

Market-led Approach to Sustainable Management of Agrobiodiversity for Livelihood Outcomes



The Lake Cluster of Pokhara Valley (LCPV), a Ramsar Site declared on 2 February 2016, includes basins of nine lakes (Phewa, Kamalpokhari, Gunde, Khaste, Neureni, Dipang, Maidi, Begnas, and Rupa) of Pokhara valley at the central section of Lower Himalaya (28°08‟02” N 84°59‟18” E), which together has 261.6 km2 of basin and 8.97 km2 of water cover. It is endowed with rich agricultural and aquatic biodiversity. Cultivating local agrobiodiversity offers various benefits to farmers, such as nutritious and safe food, resilience to bio-physical shocks and climate changes, and promotes local culture. Despite these benefits, loss of agrobiodiversity, fish species and wetland habitat, and pollution continue unabated in the LCPV. Low productivity of local agrobiodiversity crops and fish species, low consumer awareness regarding nutritive value of local agrobiodiversity, limited diversification of marketable agrobiodiversity products, and government policy favouring modern varieties are some of the underlying causes of loss of agrobiodiversity. 

In order to improve the situation, Local Initiatives for Biodiversity, Research and Development (LI-BIRD), with financial support from Darwin Initiative (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, UK), is implementing a three-year project “Market-led approach to sustainable management of agrobiodiversity for livelihood outcomes” in LCPV area from June 2019 to May 2022. The project aims to scale up the market-led approach, Unified Landscape Branding (ULB), where local produce including place-based service (homestays) from in and around Lake Cluster of Pokhara Valley (LCPV) will be marketed under a unique label/brand. A certain percentage of the profit from the business will be reinvested in sustainable management of biodiversity in the region. The projects targets to benefit 3,000 smallholder farmers in the area and also contribute to conservation of natural habitat of lakes which is at the centre of wetland biodiversity. We are forging multi-stakeholder partnerships with public entities (Pokhara Metropolitan, Annapurna and Rupa Rural Municipalities; Provincial Government especially Ministry of Land Management, Agriculture and Cooperative; Ramsar Management Authority; Machhapuchre Development Organization), private sectors (Lekhnath Chamber of Commerce and Industry; The Bazaar), cooperatives (Panchadham Agriculture Development Cooperative; Rupa Lake Restoration and Fisheries Cooperative), and community network such as Jaibik Shrot Samrakshan Abhiyan to mobilize local resources and foster stewardship for sustainable management of agricultural and wetland biodiversity. 

Project Details
Countries: Nepal
Working districts: Kaski
Project Duration: 2019 - 2022
Partners: Annapurna Ruralmunicipality, Lekhnath Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Machhapuchhre Development Organization (MDO) Kaski, Ministry of Land Management, Agriculture and Cooperative, Panchadham Agriculture Development Cooperative, Phewa Watershed Ecosystem Management Board, Pokhara Metropolitan City, Ramsar Management Authority, Rupa Ruralmunicipality, The Bazaar
Funded by: Darwin Initiative
Contact Person: Rita Gurung