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.

28 October 2010

Private Sector Interest Grows in African Farming

Mounting concern over security of food supplies is spurring a wave of private-sector investment in Africa that many hope will put it at the center of a green revolution. Already investors are waking up to Africa's potential. Forty-five private equity firms plan to invest $2 billion in the region's agriculture in the next three to five years, according to figures from Informa Agra, and consultancy McKinsey estimates the continent's agricultural output could treble from $280 billion a year today to $880 billion by 2030.

"People are realizing the potential of agriculture," says Lucy Muchoki, head of African business coalition PanAAC, which encourages investment in the continent's agricultural sector.
To meet growing global food demand the United Nation's Food and Agriculture Organization estimates an extra six million hectares need to be brought under cultivation every year for the next 30 years. With sub-Saharan Africa estimated to hold up to 60% of the world's remaining uncultivated land suitable for farming, the region's agriculture is starting to look an interesting investment.

Read the full Wall Street Journal article