APRA Brief 35: The Dilemma of Climate-resilient Agricultural Commercialisation in Tanzania and Zimbabwe

Written by: Andrew Newsham, Lars Otto Naess, Khamaldin Mutabazi, Toendepi Shonhe, Gideon Boniface, and Tsitsidzashe Bvute

The implications of climate change for agricultural commercialisation – and the implications of agricultural commercialisation for climate change – are profound. On the one hand, agricultural production is, by nature, highly sensitive to climate change and variability. On the other, commercial agricultural production for international food markets is one of the lead sectors for generating greenhouse gas emissions that are driving anthropogenic climate change. This presents the following conundrum: the burden of the changing climate falls most heavily on smallholder farmers in countries across sub-Saharan Africa, where agricultural commercialisation is seen as an important route out of poverty. What, then, are the prospects for climate-resilient, commercially-viable smallholder agriculture in sub-Saharan African countries which are facing this dilemma? We have explored this question through APRA research produced in Singida, Tanzania, and Mazowe, Zimbabwe.

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