Agriculture supports the livelihoods of the majority of Africans – predominantly smallholder farmers. GDP growth from agriculture is estimated to be up to 11 times more effective in reducing poverty than any other sector, and smallholder farmers (50% of whom are women) produce 80% of sub-Saharan Africa’s food.
Yet smallholder farming suffers from chronic under-investment. African governments are far from meeting their commitments to spend 10% of national budgets on agriculture. The quality of investment is also poor. It is heavy on subsidies and light on support for extension services, enterprise development and sustainable land and water management, all key for building resilient smallholder farming.