The Future of African Agriculture – Think Agribusiness, Not Subsistence

African Irrigation

The Future of Farming in Africa is Not Agriculture But Agribusiness

“Africa is a farm lover’s dream: abundant uncultivated arable land, roughly over half the global total; tropical climates that permit long growing seasons; a young labor force; and an expanding population that provides a readily available market for produce consumption.

“Yet, African countries are yet to harness these opportunities to ensure sustainable food security and food production. The average age of farmers is about 60 years—in a continent where 60% of the population is under 24 years of age. Farmers are also less educated, with younger, more educated Africans are leaving rural areas, where farms are located, and moving to cities.

“Some of these youngsters are also discouraged by the difficulties of accessing funds or land, the reliance on manual technology in smallholder agriculture, all compounded by the low and volatile profits.

“But to remedy these issues, a new report suggests governments should change their outlook on agriculture from a subsistence, daily activity into a commercial enterprise. The African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET) says focusing on the entire value chain of the process—land tenure, farming technology, markets, and pricing—would help transform food systems around the continent. Positioning farming ‘as a business and entrepreneurial endeavor’ would also help draw younger people into the practice, and make them see it as less of a ‘cool’ idea and more as a ‘career option.'”

Advertisements
Standard

2 thoughts on “The Future of African Agriculture – Think Agribusiness, Not Subsistence

  1. Judith Moore says:

    Brookings has an article on Chinese investment in Africa. China is Africa’s biggest economic partner, but the article doesn’t mention farming per se.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s