longreads:

The key to solving hunger in Africa starts with improving the soil. An overview of agricultural subsidies and the debate over whether the best approach is through inorganic fertilizers or greener, cheaper (but more difficult) solutions like no-till farming:

Fertilizer use in Africa is at the mercy of precarious politics. Although Rwanda’s fertilizer programme is growing, Malawi’s has started to fall apart as the country’s economy has collapsed and its international relations have deteriorated. Many of Malawi’s biggest donors, including the UK government’s Department for International Development, suspended budgetary support to the nation last year because of concerns about governance and the Malawian government’s refusal to devalue its currency as recommended by the International Monetary Fund.
Although the United Kingdom reinstated some funding to help transport fertilizer, many Malawians couldn’t purchase it this year. Changuya walked for an hour and a half to the depot in town, only to find that all the subsidized fertilizer was gone and she would not have been able to afford it anyway.

“African Agriculture: Dirt Poor.” — Natasha Gilbert, Nature
See also: “The Last Famine.” Paul Salopek, Foreign Policy

longreads:

The key to solving hunger in Africa starts with improving the soil. An overview of agricultural subsidies and the debate over whether the best approach is through inorganic fertilizers or greener, cheaper (but more difficult) solutions like no-till farming:

Fertilizer use in Africa is at the mercy of precarious politics. Although Rwanda’s fertilizer programme is growing, Malawi’s has started to fall apart as the country’s economy has collapsed and its international relations have deteriorated. Many of Malawi’s biggest donors, including the UK government’s Department for International Development, suspended budgetary support to the nation last year because of concerns about governance and the Malawian government’s refusal to devalue its currency as recommended by the International Monetary Fund.

Although the United Kingdom reinstated some funding to help transport fertilizer, many Malawians couldn’t purchase it this year. Changuya walked for an hour and a half to the depot in town, only to find that all the subsidized fertilizer was gone and she would not have been able to afford it anyway.

“African Agriculture: Dirt Poor.” — Natasha Gilbert, Nature

See also: “The Last Famine.” Paul Salopek, Foreign Policy


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