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A century of growth? A history of tobacco production and marketing in Malawi 1890-2005

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  • Prowse, Martin
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    Abstract

    During the past century tobacco production and marketing in Nyasaland/Malawi has undergone periods of dynamism similar to changes since the early 1990s. This article highlights four recurrent patterns. First, estate owners have either fostered or constrained peasant/smallholder production dependent on complementarities or competition with their estates. Second, rapid expansion of peasant/smallholder production has led to three recurrent outcomes: a large multiplier effect in tobacco-rich districts; re-regulation of the marketing of peasant/smallholder tobacco by the (colonial) state; and, lastly, concerns over the supply of food crops. The article concludes by arguing that whilst the reform of burley tobacco production and marketing in the 1990s engaged with the first two issues, it may have benefitted from paying greater attention to the latter two issues as well.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Universiteit Antwerpen, Institute of Development Policy and Management (IOB) in its series IOB Working Papers with number 2011.10.

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    Length: 36 pages
    Date of creation: Nov 2011
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:iob:wpaper:2011010

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    1. Kydd, J. & Hewitt, A., 1986. "The effectiveness of structural adjustment lending: Initial evidence from Malawi," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 347-365, March.
    2. Michael Woolcock & Simon Szreter & Vijayendra Rao, 2011. "How and Why Does History Matter for Development Policy?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(1), pages 70-96.
    3. Orr, Alastair, 2000. "'Green Gold'?: Burley Tobacco, Smallholder Agriculture, and Poverty Alleviation in Malawi," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 347-363, February.
    4. Lele, Uma, 1990. "Structural adjustment, agricultural development and the poor: Some lessons from the Malawian experience," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 18(9), pages 1207-1219, September.
    5. Kydd, Jonathan & Christiansen, Robert, 1982. "Structural change in Malawi since independence: Consequences of a development strategy based on large-scale agriculture," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 10(5), pages 355-375, May.
    6. Woelk, Godfrey & Mtisi, Sobona & Vaughan, J. Patrick, 2001. "Prospects for tobacco control in Zimbabwe: a historical perspective," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 179-192, September.
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