Teresa Smart and Joseph Hanlon are the authors of Do bicycles equal development in Mozambique? For this book they have looked more closely at this most dynamic - but mostly ignored - group of farmers, and show how they have expanded.
Support for these emergent farmers has come almost entirely from outside Mozambique. Foreign contract companies promote tobacco and cotton. The 'international public sector" of donors, NGOs and international agencies supports soya and cassava. These contract companies and public sector organisations provide the essential markets, credit, technology and practical support. These farmers have become small and medium businesses (SMEs) and are now the most dynamic sector of the rural economy.
Since independence the government - backed by many donors - has follow a dual strategy of trying to raise productivity of peasant farmers but keeping them on their one hectare plots using only a hoe (enxada), while allocating the rest of the land to large mechanised plantations. But this does not work. Few new large industrialised farms have succeeded, and even the World Bank thinks huge foreign-owned industrial farms are doomed to failure. Keeping families on 1 hectare as hoe farmers leaves them permanently in poverty, because most small farmers have too little cash to be able to buy fertiliser and seed.
This book shows that Mozambique's own farmers can take the lead, if they are supported to expand their area and become small commercial farmers. This would create rural jobs, boost the rural economy, and reduce rural poverty. But these new farmers would also take all the available land, leaving none for foreign investors. Thus a policy choice is needed.
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|Title||Chickens and beer|
|File size||2 Mb|
|eBook format||Kindle Edition, (torrent)|
|Book rating||0.7 (0 votes)
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