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Author Jean-Cyril Dagorn
Date published April 8, 2016
Number of pages 12

In 2009, about 90 percent of Malawi’s population lived below the income poverty line of $2 a day. This number is even higher in rural areas, where the vast majority of people are small-scale food producers. Agriculture accounts for around a third of Malawi’s GDP, and provides a livelihood for more than 80 percent of the population. The sector is composed of about two million small-scale food producers who use 6.5 million hectares of cultivable land and around 30,000 commercial estates that hold around 1.2 million hectares of cultivable land.

The majority of small-scale food producers cultivate less than one hectare. Only two percent of Malawi’s cropland is irrigated, and almost all of the irrigated land is controlled by commercial estates. The issue of supporting small-scale food producers with climate resilient agricultural development solutions is therefore crucial to the fight against hunger and poverty.