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Abstract

The current global economic crisis, rising food prices, and the threat of climate change have reinforced the urgency to find lasting solutions to Africa's agricultural challenges. Africa is largely an agricultural economy with the majority of the population deriving their income from farming. Agricultural development is therefore intricately linked to overall economic development in African countries. Most policy interventions have focused on "food security," a term that is used to cover key attributes of food such as sufficiency, reliability, quality, safety, timeliness, and other aspects of food necessary for healthy and thriving populations. This chapter outlines the critical linkages between food security, agricultural development, and economic growth and explains why Africa has lagged behind other regions in agricultural productivity. Improving Africa's agricultural performance will require significant political leadership, investment, and deliberate policy efforts.

Citation

Juma, Calestous. "The Growing Economy." The New Harvest: Agricultural Innovation in Africa. Ed. Calestous Juma. Oxford University Press, 2010, 1-22.