by Christina H. Gladwin, Alan Randall, Andrew Schmitz, and G. Edward Schuh Traditionally, fertilizer has been treated by economists as a private, not public, good [1]. Soil scientist Pedro Sanchez and researchers associated with the International Center for Research on Agroforestry (ICRAF), however, claim that ICRAF’s agroforestry innovations should be adopted by African farmers as an inexpensive […]

by Maxwell Mudhara, Peter. E. Hildebrand, and Christina. H. Gladwin Introduction Zimbabwe faces a challenge in meeting food requirements of its 12 million people. The population is growing at three percent per annum compared to 1-1.5 percent per annum growth in agricultural production. Therefore, per capita food production is declining. To meet its food requirements, the […]

by Robert A. Gilbert, Webster D. Sakala, and Todd D. Benson Abstract The majority of farmers in sub-Saharan Africa are female, yet women often have limited access to extension information and agricultural inputs. Designing improved agricultural research and extension services for women in Africa is a challenging task since female farmers defy simple characterizations, and […]

by Amy E. Gough, Christina H. Gladwin, and Peter E. Hildebrand Abstract The majority of Malawi’s smallholders use low purchased-input technologies and as a result, produce low yields; 40 to 60 percent of rural households face chronic food insecurity for two to five months every year. These households are therefore in need of a program to […]

by Andrea S. Anderson Abstract Diversifying household activiies is essential to household food security in Southern Malawi.  Farms are extremely small; many farms are less than half a hectare.  With these small landholdings, food security cannot be achieved by subsistence farming alone.  Cash crops and off-farm income are key to these livelihood systems.  This paper […]

by Amy J. Sullivan Introduction If as claimed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations women grow up to eighty percent of the food produced in Africa, then targeting them during research, technology development and dissemination makes sense. In order to do so, it is necessary to recognize that not all women farmers […]

by Robert P. Uttaro Abstract This paper examines two decisions farmers in southern Malawi make every planting season: whether or not to acquire increasingly expensive chemical fertilizers and whether or not to buy and plant equally expensive hybrid maize seed.   Both choices are interrelated.  Maize is the staple food crop in Malawi and the key […]

by Peter Nkedi-Kizza, Jacob Aniku, Kafui Awuma, and Christina H. Gladwin Abstract The removal of subsidy under the structural adjustment programs of the World Bank has increased the cost of fertilizers and lowered the level of fertilizer input use among the small-scale farmers in Uganda and in many African countries.  It is also reported that female […]

by Edward Mutandwa and Christopher Tafara Gadzirayi Abstract Lack of suitable storage facilities among smallholder farmers continues to expose farmers to intermittent food shocks. Farmers are thus making use of locally available preservation methods, derived from indigenous knowledge systems (IKS), to improve storability of sweet potatoes. However, not much is known about their efficacy in […]