A Policy Agenda for
Achieving an Inclusive
Transformation of Africa’s
Agri-food Systems

Adesoji Adelaja
Michigan State University

Joseph Rusike
Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa

John Ulimwengu

Mabel Hungwe
BEAT Africa

Steven Haggblade
Michigan State University

John Herbert Ainembabazi
Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa

Franklin Simtowe


Many past attempts at an African green revolution failed because government efforts were too limited and too focused on technological change while failing to create a complementary and enabling policy and market environment for its uptake.


In today’s more urbanized context, the challenge is to transform Africa’s entire agri-food system in an equitable and employment intensive way, through a more multisectoral approach to the problem that builds on partnerships between the public and private sectors.


A successful agricultural transformation today requires that governments provide an enabling business environment for farming and agribusiness; complement policy reforms through institutional reforms; invest in rural infrastructure; and undertake targeted interventions to help commercialize many more smallholders and to promote the development of local small and medium enterprises (SMEs).


The real challenge is to convince governments to commit to and implement this agricultural and rural development agenda over several decades.


Comprehensive strategies that cover the entire agriculture sector rarely translate into successful implementation strategies, and a more practical approach is to concentrate on a few first movers that can achieve early successes, build up political momentum, and open up new growth opportunities elsewhere in the sector.