The Contribution of Assisted Natural Regeneration (ANR) Towards Farmers’ Livelihoods in Burkina Faso


Burkina Faso is a Sahelian country with an essentially
agricultural economy. Non-timber forest products contribute
towards food and household income, especially in
rural areas. Since the end of the 1970s, drought sequences,
insufficient and/or poor spatiotemporal rainfall distribution
and anthropogenic actions have significantly affected
ecosystems and production conditions. Faced with this
environmental problem, various agricultural and forestry
actors are looking for ways to mitigate the problem. Several
methods have been developed at national level to recover
vegetation cover, safeguard biodiversity and reduce the
pressure on natural resources. Assisted natural regeneration
(ANR) is one technique adopted by farmers to improve
the conservation and management of agroforestry
parks. This practice is important for the environment, and
for improving farmers’ food security.


A literature review and interviews with questionnaires
were used to evaluate the impact of ANR on farmers’ livelihoods
in the municipality of Ouahigouya in northern
Burkina Faso.

The study showed that ANR has resulted in the maintenance
of water in the fields and improvements in plant
cover and biodiversity, thus providing more useful species
for soil fertilisation. Trees have an anti-erosion effect
against wind and water erosion.

In terms of food security and nutrition, the results of the
study showed that ANR products contributed towards
improving the quantity and quality of food, thanks to certain
leaves and fruits. Trees help to ensure a quantitative
and qualitative food supply for animals.
The surveys showed that ANR products play an important
role in improving household income. Processing and selling
these products creates jobs, and represents a source of

Figure that is a photo of shea butter and shea nuts,
Figure 1: Shea butter made from shea nuts.


The project is expected to:

  • Increase crop production
  • Improve food and nutritional security in terms of quality and quantity
  • Increase producers’ income
  • Increase foraging species for animals during the dry season.

It should also solve the problems of uncontrolled clearance and deforestation of new land. 

Lessons learned

  • Involving administrative and customary authorities in outreach activities is recommended, as they can contribute financially and internalise practice when implementing their investment plans.
  • Sharing the results broadly helps build interest in the practice among other stakeholders as well as policymakers.