Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN)

Enhancing food security and developing sustainable rural livelihoods project
November 2009
T Laugerud; S R Mkandawire; E J Kantchewa

Acknowledgements: FANRPAN acknowledges Eldis as the source of this document:

This report covers the mid-term review of the Enhancing Food Security and Developing Sustainable Rural Livelihoods Project, established in Malawi and supported by the Norwegian government. The aim of the report is to see if the Project was on track and to give recommendations for further implementation of it.

The paper highlights the following recommendations for the project:
  • starting new agro-business groups is not advised; efforts should be put into making existing ones operational and sustainable
  • marketing aspects must be an integral part of the Farmers Business Schools’ curriculum
  • it is not recommended to make any drastic changes in the project management set-up during the remaining two years of the project period
  • the project management must formulate an exit strategy for the project.
Lessons learned from the project include:
  • before starting production in any new agro-business groups, the market potential for various products must be properly explored
  • business support should only be given to farmers above the minimum subsistence level
  • the success of any intervention is fully dependent on the wholehearted participation of the governmental system at local level
  • incentives for the government staff to identify with the actions must be carefully considered, like transport facilitation
  • reporting requirements of various partners should be discussed at the start-up of a project and a common format should be agreed to
  • the technical standard of infrastructure development must not be relaxed, which might mean closer technical supervision during the construction phase
  • awareness raising and capacity building at farmer level is a never-ending undertaking and must be re-addressed at certain intervals.

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