By Raphael Obonyo
DEVELOPMENT experts and political leaders agree that Africa’s enormous agricultural potential, if tapped, can feed the continent and spur socio-economic growth.
In its 2016–2025 strategy for agricultural transformation in Africa, the African Development Bank (AfDB) advises governments to empower smallholder farmers to sustainably and profitably produce more food and achieve a food-secure continent.
That means strengthening the bargaining power of small-scale farmers and giving them access to improved soil that will increase yields, fertiliser and markets to enhance their incomes and well-being.
At a ministerial roundtable in the margins of the 2016 Korea-Africa Economic Cooperation Conference in Seoul, South Korea, AfDB President Akinwumi Adesina said, “To achieve food sufficiency and turn the continent into a net food exporter, Africa must empower smallholder farmers, who constitute 70 percent of the population and produce 80 percent of the food consumed in the continent.”
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