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Market access by smallholder farmers in Malawi

  • Zeller, Manfred
  • Diagne, Aliou
  • Mataya, Charles

In Malawi, maize is the major crop and food staple. Given limited off-farm employment opportunities, much-needed increases in household income for improving food security must come from gains in agricultural productivity through better technology and more profitable crops. In the past, agricultural policy promoted hybrid maize and, more recently, tobacco to increase smallholder income. This paper presents an analysis of what determines the adoption of these two crops and what kind of income effects follow from adoption. Apart from factor endowment and exposure to agroecological risks, differences in the household's access to financial and commodity markets significantly influence its cropping shares and farm income.

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Paper provided by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in its series FCND discussion papers with number 35.

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Date of creation: 1997
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Handle: RePEc:fpr:fcnddp:35
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  1. Smale, Melinda & Heisey, Paul W & Leathers, Howard D, 1995. "Maize of the Ancestors and Modern Varieties: The Microeconomics of High-Yielding Variety Adoption in Malawi," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(2), pages 351-68, January.
  2. Zeller, Manfred & Ahmed, Akhter U. & Babu, Suresh Chandra & Broca, Sumiter S. & Diagne, Aliou & Sharma, Manohar, 1996. "Rural finance policies for food security of the poor," FCND discussion papers 11, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  3. Feder, Gershon & Just, Richard E & Zilberman, David, 1985. "Adoption of Agricultural Innovations in Developing Countries: A Survey," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(2), pages 255-98, January.
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