Why an Inclusive Agricultural
Transformation is Africa’s
Way Forward

Peter B. R. Hazell
Independent Researcher


Africa’s food systems are undergoing a period of dynamic change which is creating many new growth opportunities, but whose full exploitation requires an agricultural transformation.


The agricultural transformation that Africa needs today has to be much more focused on a market driven, business agenda that encompasses the entire food system, not just agricultural production.


From among the alternative pathways available for achieving this transformation, this Africa Agriculture Status Report promotes an “inclusive” transformation based on promoting the growth of small farms and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Africa’s food systems.


Agricultural assistance aimed at commercializing more small farms needs to be targeted to those farm households that have viable farm business prospects and capabilities. Alternative types of assistance should be given to other types of small farm households if resources are not to be wasted, or farm households misled into unsustainable livelihood strategies.


Although the private sector can do many things on its own, achieving an inclusive transformation of the food system does require proactive public sector policies and investments.