Food Security

Policies and institutions for sustainable development, increased agricultural production, food and nutrition security, expanded value addition and market access, and sound environmental and natural resource management implemented

Africa has 60 percent of the world’s available arable land and agriculture is the source of livelihood for 70 percent of the population. Yet the continent generates only 10 percent of global agricultural output. African agriculture is plagued by low productivity, under-investment, urban-biased policies and bottlenecks preventing women’s access to productive capital, including secure land tenure. African agriculture also has low value addition and poor rural infrastructure. As a result of poor performance, the spectre of famine that has disappeared from other parts of the world still persists in Africa.

UNDP reports that a quarter of the world’s multidimensional poor people (456 million), live in Africa.Food security and human development are inextricably linked with mediating factors such as productivity, nutrition, resilience and empowerment. Furthermore, the environment and natural resources on which productivity and sustainability rests is assailed by a variety of factors, the most urgent of which is Climate Change.

The continent can extricate itself from the vicious cycles of drought, hunger and famine by putting emphasis on the right policies to improve productivity of smallholders, more effective nutrition policies, targeting especially children, building households’ ability to cope with shocks, empowering women, the youth and persons with disabilities and accelerating rural infrastructure and value addition.

To boost agriculture and nutrition, the AUC in collaboration with NPCA and RECs will facilitate implementation of strategies contained in the CAADP and other frameworks in order to increase food production and accessibility, so that Africa can feed itself, export, and that drought triggered food crisis are reduced. The Commission will also develop strategies that promote value addition of Africa’s raw material through the development of agro-processing and market sectors in Member States. It will also promote measures to support Africa transition to green economy by promoting sustainable natural resource management, mitigating effects of climatic change without compromising growth.

The momentum of implementation of the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Programme (CAADP) will be sustained in terms of supporting Member States in their efforts to align their policies and strategies in support of their agricultural sector. The implementation of various initiatives on key flagship interventions, such as the livestock production and health, land policy, agricultural inputs and product markets will be accelerated. The Commission through CAADP will promote and facilitate the generation and dissemination of knowledge, innovation and technology for agricultural transformation, including through promoting measures for rural infrastructure development and value addition. Increased efforts will be made towards achieving the goal of 10per cent allocation of national budgets to agriculture through advocacy and other measures. Other measures to facilitate increased productivity of African agriculture will be facilitated.

The Commission will place special emphasis on promoting improved access of women and youth to productive resources (land, finance, technology, etc). Women are responsible for over 60per cent of food production on the continent and yet have poor security of land tenure and lack capital for investment. This situation needs to change if the continent is to achieve both food and nutrition self-sufficiency.

The Commission will work to promote sustainability of Africa’s environment and natural resources, including land, forests and water. The African Climate Change Agendawill be advanced through refining the African common position and ensuring the continuity of Africa speaking with one voice in global forum, as well as through enhancing the capacities of Member States and RECs in terms of improving supply and access to earth observation and climate information through coordination of the Monitoring for Environment and Security in Africa (MESA) Programme which builds on the achievements of the African Monitoring of the Environment for Sustainable Development (AMESD) Programme. The Great Green Wall Programme for the Sahara and Sahel Initiative (GGWSSI) will be strengthened to combat land degradation and desertification. The Commission will work with Member States to ensure that the Sharm El-Sheik Commitments on water and sanitation are met.

The Commission envisages that at the end of the strategic plan period, there will be: significant improvements in sustainable agricultural production and food security and in resilience to climate induced shocks leading to reductions in drought-triggered food crisis.

To implement these strategies and actions under this outcome, the Commission's department of Rural Economy and Agriculture will take the lead. For each output under this outcome the lead AUC departments, the cooperating departments and the external partners have been identified.

RECs and Member States' institutions are the principal actors in the implementation and monitoring of actions on the ground, working closely with the NPCA.