The picture could be straight out of a tourist postcard – a sleepy green mountain with misty clouds floating above the canopy – if not for one fatal flaw: the ugly gash running right through the middle.
It’s Saturday, market day at the popular Bvumbwe market in Thyolo district. About 40 kilometers away in Chiradzulu district, a vegetable vendor and mother of five, Esnart Nthawa, 35, has woken up at three a.m. to prepare for the journey to the market.
Beekeeping and silkworm farming have long been critical cogs of Ethiopian life, providing food, jobs and much needed income.
Over 600 delegates representing at least 570 million farms scattered around the world gathered in Zambia from May 4-7 under the umbrella of the World Farmers' Organisation (WFO) to discuss climate change, land tenure, innovations and capacity building as four pillars on which to build agricultural development.
Merian Kalala, a farmer in Solwezi, capital of the North-Western Province of Zambia, knows firsthand that climate change is posing massive problems for agricultural productivity.
With recent data showing that 793 million people still go to bed hungry, ending hunger and poverty in 15 years is the next development challenge that world leaders have set for themselves.
As the World Farmers' Organization meets for its annual conference in Zambia to promote policies that strengthen this critical sector, IPS looks at how farmers across the globe are tackling the interconnected challenges of climate change, market fluctuations, water and land management, and energy access.
In the past, all rural homes in Cuba had gardens for putting fresh vegetables on the dinner table. The local term for these gardens is “conuco”, a word with indigenous roots that is still used in several Caribbean nations.
‘No Farmer, No Food’ is an old slogan that the Zambia National Farmers’ Union still uses. Some people consider it a cliché, but it could be regaining its place in history as agriculture is increasingly seen as the answer to a wide range of the world’s critical needs such as nutrition, sustainable jobs and income for the rural poor.
“Fishing isn’t just for making a living, it’s also enjoyable,” said Pedro Pascual, a 70-year-old fisherman who has been taking his small boat out to sea off Chile’s Pacific coast in the early hours of the morning almost every day for the past 50 years, to support his family.
Inside a health clinic run by the Catholic Daughters of Saint Anne, a nurse wraps a special tape measure around the upper arm of 2-year-old Rodas cradled in her mother’s arms. The tape reads yellow, meaning “moderately” malnourished, according to the attending nurse.
In 2015 the international community took some huge strides forward on a number of vital issues.There was the agreement on the United Nations new Sustainable Development Goals.
Small-scale farmer Augustine Sibanda has grown resilient traditional sorghum varieties passed down through generations but has increased his yields after he adopted improved seed varieties developed through research.
Busia County in western Kenya is home to an array of indigenous vegetables. But for decades there has been a shift in popular taste leading to leading to little interest in what is indigenously grown. This relegated the vegetables to the periphery with most farmers cultivating kale and cabbages among other more exotic varieties.
“Sometimes we have too much water, which washes everything away,” Cecilia Joseph, originally from Haiti, said in heavily accented Spanish while pulling up a ñame root (a kind of yam) on her farm in the municipality of Santo Domingo Norte in the Dominican Republic.