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Agricultural intensification: The status in six African countries

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ABSTRACT

Boserup and Ruthenberg (BR) provided the framework to analyze the impact of population growth and market access on the intensification of farming systems. Prior evidence in Africa is consistent with the framework. Over the past two decades, rapid population growth has put farming systems under stress, while rapid urbanization and economic growth have provided new market opportunities. New measures of agro-ecological potential and urban gravity are developed to analyze their impact on population density and market access. The descriptive and regression analyses show that the patterns of intensification across countries are only partially consistent with the BR predictions. Fallow areas have disappeared, but cropping intensities remain very low. The use of organic and chemical fertilizers is too low to maintain soil fertility. Investments in irrigation are inadequate. In light of the promising outcomes suggested by the Boserup-Ruthenberg framework, the process of intensification across these countries appears to have been weak.

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Agro-ecological potential, agro-ecological population pressure and urban gravity.
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f0005: Agro-ecological potential, agro-ecological population pressure and urban gravity.

Mentions: In Table 1, Row 1, we see that the average AEP per ha across all the countries is 740 dollars per ha, evaluated at international commodity prices prevailing between 2005 and 2008.20 The totals across countries are population weighted. From Fig. 1, it is clear that it is the highest in Uganda, because of its good climate conditions,21 and the lowest is in Niger, in the very dry Sahelian zone. Map 1 also illustrates that high potential areas are most prevalent in Uganda and Central and Southern Malawi. In other countries, it is mostly light green22 areas, with potentials between 478 and 786 dollars per ha, rather than the darker green areas with higher potential. In Ethiopia and Nigeria, there are also many brown areas that have low potential, mainly in the dry northern parts of each of these countries. In Niger, low potential areas dominate in the entire country.


Agricultural intensification: The status in six African countries
Agro-ecological potential, agro-ecological population pressure and urban gravity.
© Copyright Policy - CC BY
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5384439&req=5

f0005: Agro-ecological potential, agro-ecological population pressure and urban gravity.
Mentions: In Table 1, Row 1, we see that the average AEP per ha across all the countries is 740 dollars per ha, evaluated at international commodity prices prevailing between 2005 and 2008.20 The totals across countries are population weighted. From Fig. 1, it is clear that it is the highest in Uganda, because of its good climate conditions,21 and the lowest is in Niger, in the very dry Sahelian zone. Map 1 also illustrates that high potential areas are most prevalent in Uganda and Central and Southern Malawi. In other countries, it is mostly light green22 areas, with potentials between 478 and 786 dollars per ha, rather than the darker green areas with higher potential. In Ethiopia and Nigeria, there are also many brown areas that have low potential, mainly in the dry northern parts of each of these countries. In Niger, low potential areas dominate in the entire country.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Boserup and Ruthenberg (BR) provided the framework to analyze the impact of population growth and market access on the intensification of farming systems. Prior evidence in Africa is consistent with the framework. Over the past two decades, rapid population growth has put farming systems under stress, while rapid urbanization and economic growth have provided new market opportunities. New measures of agro-ecological potential and urban gravity are developed to analyze their impact on population density and market access. The descriptive and regression analyses show that the patterns of intensification across countries are only partially consistent with the BR predictions. Fallow areas have disappeared, but cropping intensities remain very low. The use of organic and chemical fertilizers is too low to maintain soil fertility. Investments in irrigation are inadequate. In light of the promising outcomes suggested by the Boserup-Ruthenberg framework, the process of intensification across these countries appears to have been weak.

No MeSH data available.