Small scale farmers are among the poorest and the hungriest in the world and yet small scale farming is supposed to pave the way to ending poverty in sub-Saharan Africa. It even appears as if efforts by governments and the development community at large to support small scale farming in sub-Saharan Africa are not yielding significant results. Poverty is deepening and the number of the hungry is going up not down. In the light of the global recommitments to agriculture, calls are being made wherever possible to invest in small scale agriculture but different results cannot be expected if the same strategiesare used.
This article reiterates and proposes some ideas to make agriculture work for development in sub-Saharan Africa. New strategies and investments in small scale farming must take cognizance of some key facts, that market access is key to small scale food production systems as such efforts to increase agricultural productivity can only be effective if they are linked to an appreciation of market potential. As much as small farmers require assistance to be able to produce more food, they equally require assistance to be able to sell Africa’s food and this requires serious reconsideration of post-production systems in sub-Saharan Africa. Also, that there is a need for strategies that will seek to end the way interventions in the agricultural sector are de-linked from each other and promote an integrated approach of supporting the full continuum of production, processing and marketing of food.
With contributions from more than 100 specialists in gender, agriculture and rural development. Combines descriptive accounts of national and international experiences in agricultural investment with practical guidance on designing strategies that capitalize on gender equality and women's empowerment.
ODI Briefing Paper
The EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) aims to promote agriculture throughout the EU by increasing farmers’ incomes and supporting the provision of public goods such as the environment. It is funded from the European Commission (EC) budget and accounts for roughly 40% of total EC expenditure. It is divided into two pillars. Pillar 1 includes both direct payments to farmers and market management measures. Pillar 2 focuses on improving the structural and environmental performance of agriculture and on promoting local/rural development. Pillar 2 requires Member State co-financing.
The EU has recognised that making development policy in isolation is not sufficient. Its commitment to Policy Coherence for Development seeks to ensure that all policies, not only development assistance, promote growth in developing countries. Any decision on CAP reform options must, therefore, be analysed against development goals.
The United Nations System High Level Task Force on Global Food Security released a summary version of its Updated Comprehensive Framework for Action (UCFA). The UCFA is the UN system-wide coordinated approach for supporting country and regional actions that lead to sustainable and resilient rural livelihoods and food and nutrition security for all. The summary version of the UCFA has been prepared as an easy-to-read concise document that highlights the concepts supporting the approach and presents its ten key principles for action. For further information on the work of the High Level Task Force and its Updated Comprehensive Framework for Action, please visit the website http://www.un-foodsecurity.org/