Farming on the periphery: The opportunity of small-scale Zambian farmers to invest in agricultural production
It has been 13 years since Zambia implemented a structural adjustment plan that was intended to rejuvenate the country's economy and reduce poverty. To date, Zambia is still in an unmanageable debt crisis and the poverty issue in the country is far from solved. Small-scale farmers in Zambia are one of the most disadvantaged groups. They make up 56% of Zambia's population, yet 81% of them are classified as extremely poor. In response to Zambia's need to reduce poverty and bring about economic development, a broad based agricultural development plan that targets the development of small-scale farmers has been proposed. This research has found that the livelihoods and agricultural practices of small-scale farmers in Zambia's Northwestern Province have not benefited from the country's structural adjustment program. As for their opportunity to engage in agricultural development, they still lack some of the most basic components of agricultural production, namely access to transport, markets, fertilizers and credit.