Consolidating Research on Alternative Livelihoods to Tobacco Farming

In an attempt to block policies aimed at reducing the demand for tobacco products, tobacco companies claim that such policies will have a negative impact on employment and the economy in tobacco-producing countries. It is therefore crucial to demonstrate that these claims are false, and that viable alternatives to tobacco growing exist. Moreover, tobacco cropping is associated with negative environmental, health and socioeconomic impacts, making alternative crops desirable from a development as well as a tobacco-control perspective.

IDRC has supported work on these issues in such countries as Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, India, Kenya, Lebanon, Malawi and Viet Nam. Researchers will consolidate the lessons learned to date on the health, environmental and social impacts of tobacco farming; the economic condition of tobacco farmers; tobacco industry strategies; and successes and challenges in crop diversification. They will identify knowledge gaps and develop a research agenda to address them. And, they will adopt a strategy for disseminating the knowledge acquired to date. The project will include bringing together key researchers in a workshop to be held in the first half of 2011.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Monday, November 22, 2010

End Date

Thursday, May 15, 2014


24 months

IDRC Officer

Leppan, Wardie

Total funding

CA$ 347,250


Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, India, Kenya, Lebanon, Malawi, Viet Nam


Food, Environment, and Health