The Brussels Development Briefing n. 57 on “Investing in smallholder agriculture for food security and nutrition” organised by CTA, the European Commission/EuropeAid and the ACP Secretariat was held on Wednesday 11th September 2019, 9h00-13h00 at the ACP Secretariat, Avenue Georges Henri 451, 1200 Brussels, Room C. The Briefing discussed smallholder agriculture and its key role in delivering food security/nutrition, and sustainable food systems, as recognised in SDG 2.

Discussions centred around the frameworks and processes needed to promote inclusive smallholder agricultural production that contributes to sustainable food systems.  Examples of successes from smallholders in various sectors and value chains were used to make the case for further support to smallholder-driven agriculture, with an evaluation of the factors for success, their replicability, and potential for upscaling of best practices.

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NEW! On the subject of Investing in Smallholder Agriculture

Background Note and Programme




Evaluation Results



09h00-09h15      Introduction to the BriefingIsolina Boto, Manager, CTA Brussels Office and Coordinator of the Briefings 

Introductory remarks: Olusola Ojo, Expert, Rural Development, Food Security and the Environment, ACP Secretariat; Leonard Mizzi, Head of Unit, Devco C1, Food Security, Nutrition, Europeaid, European Commission; Michael Hailu, Director, CTA. [video]

 09h15-11h00     Panel 1: Contribution of smallholder agriculture to food and nutrition security and sustainable food systems
This panel will discuss how smallholder agriculture contributes to sustainable food systems and what are the main strengths and challenges they face. It will share views on the framework, challenges and opportunities for a more smallholder supportive approach.
Chair: Ishmael Sunga, CEO, Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions (SACAU) [video]

– Smallholder agriculture: strengths and challenges, evolution and recent trends
Jan Douwe van der Ploeg, Professor, Dept  Social Sciences, Wageningen University [presentation|video]

– Small farmers and global food governance
Nora McKeon, Professor, Rome 3 University, Italy [ presentation|video]

– The UN Decade of Family Farming (2019-2028) and the prospects for smallholders
Roberto Ridolfi, Assistant Director-General, Support & Technical Cooperation, FAO [presentation|video]

– Creating livelihoods for rural youth in rural economies
Elizabeth Nsimadala, President of PAFO and EAFF [presentation|video]

Panel 1 Questions & Answers [video]

 11h00-11h15 Coffee Break

 11h15-13h00     Panel 2: Successes from smallholder agriculture and lessons learned
This panel will present some successes from smallholder agriculture across ACP regions, the drivers of success and will share lessons learned from some sustainable models.
Chair: Fatma Ben Rejeb, CEO, Panafrican Farmers Organization (PAFO) [video]

– Successes in funding mechanisms to support smallholders farming
Marco Dekker, MERL Manager, STARS Program, ICCO [presentation|video]

– Supporting territorial markets and smallholder capacity to meet urban food demand
Mamadou Goita, Executive Director, IRPAD [presentation|video]

– Supporting innovations and promoting funding opportunities for smallholders
Kola Masha, Managing Partner of Babban Gona, Nigeria [presentation|video]

– Successes by organized women smallholders
Annick Sezibera, Executive Secretary, CAPAD, Burundi [presentation|video]

 Panel 2 Questions & Answers, and Closing remarks
Fatma Ben Rejeb, PAFO ; Michael Hailu, CTA [video]

13h00 Light Lunch