New markets and technological change for the traditional cereals in semiarid sub-Saharan Africa: the Malian case
During the last three decades in sub-Saharan Africa, development and research resources have concentrated on the higher-rainfall and irrigated regions, especially on export crops and the principal food crops grown there. There has been much less concern and investment in semiarid regions without irrigation. Another negative factor has been the lack of public policy concern with the profitability of the basic food crops. With good weather, prices collapse. With bad weather, governments and NGOs dispense food crops as food aid or at subsidized prices. This article documents the importance of the demand side to facilitate diffusion of new technologies for the basic food commodities of semiarid regions-the traditional cereals. With farm programming models aggregated into a sector model, the combination of technological change and demand shifts for sorghum are evaluated in one semiarid region where the traditional cereals are concentrated. It focuses on combining policies to increase the prices farmers receive after introduction of technologies that use higher input levels. It also compares benefits of a strategy that focuses on yield and demand increases for a traditional cereal of the semiarid region, sorghum, with two alternative strategies for the higher-rainfall zone. Copyright 2005 International Association of Agricultural Economics.
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Volume (Year): 32 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2 (03)
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