2016 was a year of food crisis in Africa that affected nearly 15 million people: in Mozambique in particular, El Niño caused an excessive drought that exacerbated the already vulnerable nutritional conditions of the population.
Activities focus on four districts of Zambezia, one of the economically poorest regions of Mozambique, where families live off agriculture and livestock.
Project objectives: in nine months, to improve the production and commercial efficiency of the agricultural sector to respond to the region’s emergency and food and nutritional vulnerability.
120,000 beneficiaries of activities
Support to 2,842 women in terms of access to resources and decision-making processes
In 9 months, 7% reduction of the population’s food insecurity situation
With an economy based on the agricultural sector, the lack of rain is a major obstacle for the lives of millions of people in Mozambique.
The serious production and food crisis the country is now facing is mainly caused by the climatic phenomenon El Niño which, between 2015 and 2016, has been particularly strong.
The government declared a state of emergency: in Zambezia in particular, the reduced agricultural production has brought both the private sector and households to their knees.
Most rural families were forced to repeat sowing more than twice, drastically reducing food reserves and availability. The resulting chain reaction has caused a reduction in the first crop as well as slowing down the second sowing period: many fields will not produce anything at least until the next rainy season, between December and March.
The level of nutrition is scarce and poor and the resulting increase in the price of rice, corn and sorghum is worsening the already precarious economic situation of the communities. In addition, due to the scarcity of water, health and hygiene conditions have been worsening and this contributes to the spread of infections such as cholera.
In addition to the distribution of food as a first response to the emergency, long-term strategies need to be implemented to better address the food shortage caused by region-specific adverse weather conditions and, in general, to improve the agricultural sector’s productivity.
The nine-month project’s scope involves four districts of Zambezia.
To improve the effectiveness and guarantee the sustainability of the agricultural sector, we introduce the crop rotation technique and the use of organic fertilizers, we distribute appropriate tools and seeds, we create community vegetable gardens and install motor pumps to ensure field irrigation.
We also intend to increase livestock activities, which are hardly practiced despite the fact that they play a key role in integrating both nutrition and rural household income.
Finally we want to enhance agricultural product trade by supporting existing farmer associations, training them on conservation techniques and surplus management, building storage warehouses and better silos that can easily be replicated and organizing agricultural fairs as sale opportunities.
To achieve these objectives, we focus on technical training and onsite assistance.
The project aims to increase the agro-pastoral production and the skills of surplus management of growers and farmers in four districts of Zambezia through:
Beneficiaries: 120,000 growers and farmers, through direct work with 6,272 small producers.
Indirect beneficiaries: the entire population of the four districts.
Emergency response through integrated agricultural development in Zambezia
Ambrogio Lamesta, [email protected]
October 2016 – July 2017
Other institutions involved
União dos Camponeses Provincial de Zambézia (UPC-Z)