Making Agrifood Systems Work for the Rural Poor in Eastern and Southern Africa
In a context of rising food prices, millions of Africans in marginal areas rely on a range of indigenous or underutilized crops for food, nutrition and income security. This diversifies the farming system, spreads the risk and helps farmers adapt to climate change. These farmers are the hardest to reach, however, and the least likely to benefit from agricultural research and development efforts. This project will broaden the options for resource-poor farmers to diversify into a set of underutilized crops that tend to be locally important but receive little or no attention from government. Drawing on an agrifood system conceptual framework, researchers will experiment with innovative approaches for adapting and scaling up productivity-enhancing technologies, supported by appropriate market and policy innovations. The project will be implemented on selected sites in Kenya, Malawi and Uganda. It is expected to generate locally relevant results and regional syntheses that can be used to influence food security policy and related initiatives in Eastern and Southern Africa.