1.5 billion people live in smallholder households and produce 80% of Food in Asia and SSA

November 2, 2015

 

"Eighty percent of the farmland in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia is managed by smallholders (working on up to 10 hectares). "

"Out of the 2.5 billion people in poor countries living directly from the food and agriculture sector, 1.5 billion people live in smallholder households."

"Women comprise an average of 43 percent of the agricultural labour force of developing countries up to almost 50 percent in Eastern and Southeastern Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Should women farmers have the same access to productive resources as men, they could increase yields on their farms by 20-30 percent, lifting 100-150 million people out of hunger."

"Smallholders provide up to 80 percent of the food supply in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa."

[Also from IFAD: "Around the world, there are approximately 500 million smallholder farms. Most smallholders and their dependents – some two billion women, men and children – live in poverty. In much of Africa and South Asia, small farms still account for the largest share of agricultural output. It is also estimated that small farms provide as much as 80 per cent of the food locally consumed in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa."]

From FAO's Family Farming Knowledge Platform:

• More than 90 percent of the 570 million farms worldwide are managed by an individual or a family and rely primarily on family labour.
• Family farms produce more than 80 percent of the world’s food in value terms, confirming family farming’s central importance in world food security today and for future generations.
• The vast majority of the world’s farms are small or very small. Farms smaller than 2 hectares account for 84 percent of all farms and control only 12 percent of all agricultural land.
• Many of the larger farms are family-owned also.
• Public policies that recognize the diversity and complexity of the challenges faced by family farms are key to end hunger and achieve inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems.
• 80 percent of the world’s food in value terms, confirming family farming’s central importance in world food security today and for future generations.

FAO, Sustainability Pathways Factsheets, 2012 "Smallholders and Family Farmers." [online] http://www.fao.org/fileadmin/templates/nr/sustainability_pathways/docs/Factsheet_SMALLHOLDERS.pdf

[IFAD source: International Fund for Agricultural Development, "Proceedings of the Conference: Conference on New Directions in Smallholder Agriculture," (Rome, Italy: 2011) 62, Accessed February 12, 2014, http://www.ifad.org/events/agriculture/doc/proceedings.pdf]

FAO, "Family Farming Knowledge Platform," accessed November 2, 2015, http://www.fao.org/family-farming/background/en/.

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