This article is meant to speak out on behalf of smallholder farmers.
There is much information and research in and around their potential that never seems to reach them. What then can be said about them? What can they say of themselves? Their potential is described in countless journals.
The potential of small holder farmers in Africa is yet to be realised, their knowledge on how and what to farm is outdated and unsustainable. Some say smallholder farmers are the key to food security — both physical and economic access to food that meets people’s dietary needs (WHO,1996) yet Africa over the years has faced one famine after another but the same outdated and unsustainable farming practices farming have remained.
Some say smallholder farmers are the key to food security, that their potential can empower communities through sustainable choices. They need renewed realities by unlearning and relearning because we are in the information age and there’s plenty of new information. Smallholder farmers are mostly in rural areas where they may not have access to this information and yet the key to unlock their potential is in education on modern and sustainable agricultural practices.
Without empowering famers through information, the value chains that are created from research are non-beneficial because the power of information remains in the hands of thinkers and not doers. This information needs to get to the doers in order to materialise the value created by the research.
Let’s give smallholder farmers this much needed information now. When we do, they will know what to do with their farms and in turn have better produce.