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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

African small scale farmers need protection - Experts

Experts from the African Centre for Economic Transformation (ACET) has called on African governments to implement policies that would encourage fair competition in order to protect small farmers from the exploits of middlemen, reports AllAfrica.

Though African farmers need the governments and donors for investments to increase agricultural productivity, the investments could depress commodity prices and farm incomes if not linked to fair market opportunities for farmers.

An agricultural economist at ACET, Francis Mulangu said an increase in competition among processors is good for the farmers while the opposite will have negative effects on the farmers.

This he said at the sixth African Economic Conference in Addis Ababa. He also said that an increase in production of traditional export crops has not translated into much growth in farm incomes.

Also speaking is the Economic Advisor at United Nations Development Programme’s ountry office in Chad, Ginette Camara affirmed that the weakness of the existing institutional frameworks is hindering the development of proper market structures that can benefit small farmers.

"Governments must create credible institutions that will ensure proper competition in the market to protect farmers," said Ms Camara. Read more

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