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Increasing the Climate Resilience and Productivity of Emerging Farmers in Zambia
Published 04/21/2022 by Global Communities
In Zambia, agriculture is a key employment sector and one that is essential to local food security. However, emerging farmers are facing many challenges, including fall armyworm threatening their fields, climate variabilities and poor agricultural productivity.
Global Communities, Corteva Agriscience, John Deere and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) partnered in 2020 with the goal of ultimately increasing the productivity and improving the sustainable farming practices of 10,000 emerging farmers, 30 percent of whom are women.
“Access to finance is a binding constraint for the agriculture sector. The Emerging Farmers Partnership is removing this impediment by linking emerging farmers to private-sector partners, Corteva Agriscience and John Deere for input and equipment loans, respectively,” explains Kevin Kabunda, Chief of Party at Global Communities Zambia.
“Our program is ‘future forward’ in that this finance will enable emerging farmers to increase their resilience to climate change and other shocks through adoption of improved technologies.”Kevin Kabunda, Chief of Party, Global Communities Zambia
Emerging farmers are not only being trained in agricultural skills but also market-based business approaches to determine the viability and profitability of their farming enterprises and preparing them for long-term success.
As of early 2022, 369 emerging farmers (10 percent of whom are women) have already participated in business skills training support through the partnership. In addition, 17 emerging farmers who are also agro-entrepreneurs have received consignment loans for inputs such as seeds and crop protection products like herbicide and pesticide (valued at $991,298). The project has also provided a $27,000 loan for mechanization to a woman emerging farmer for the purchase of a tractor to advance her business.
“Our program is ‘future forward’ in that this finance will enable emerging farmers to increase their resilience to climate change and other shocks through adoption of improved technologies such as Corteva’s hybrid and drought-resistant seed, improved practices and productive assets,” says Kabunda. “The project trains the farmers by providing business and Integrated Pest Management/safer use skills for crop protection products. This is in addition to promoting improved practices such as conservation farming to preserve the integrity of the crops, soil and climate.”
Meet A Few of Our Emerging Farmers
This content is part of Future Forward, a thought leadership and storytelling series on how Global Communities is driving change to save lives, advance equity and secure strong futures. To learn more, visit globalcommunities.org/futureforward.