Whether for profit or social motives - and often both - an increasing number of investors are targeting opportunities in African agriculture. At the same time innovative approaches for deploying aid to support farming businesses linked to smallholders are emerging. This blog provides a snapshot of who is doing what, where and how.

1 July 2010

Small farmers should get on the "land grab" bandwagon

If you are a small farmer in a developing country, and there is a big agricultural land investment deal going down in your neighbourhood, you could become part of it and make money in several ways, said a new UN-backed study. A growing number of "land grab" deals, especially in Africa, have hit the headlines of late.

The study - Making the most of agricultural investment: A survey of business models that provide opportunities for smallholders - examined agricultural investment models that have included small farmers and suggested changes to make sure the poor were not short-changed; more than 70 percent of people living in developing countries are small farmers.

To make these models work you need strong policies in place and vigilant governments to "police" the deals, said Sonja Vermeulen, deputy director of research at the Denmark-based Challenge Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security, one of the study's two authors.

Link to Reuters article