Syndicate content

Add new comment

Submitted by Anonymous on
Having been close to the small scale farmers that benefit from the fertilizer subsidies in Zambia, I feel that Fertilizer subsidy is an intermediate solution to food security for poor farmers. following a series of poor droughts and poor harvests I feel that the poor farmers need this assistance to lift them up from the effects of previous droughts and poor harvests. Although it is true that the support schemes are usually abused, it is also true that they have had a significant impact in improving yields and enhancing food security. I think it is better for governments to spend money on fertilizer subsidies than spending it on food aid to the farmers. A good harvest in Zambia has a great impact on GDP growth, it has been seen over the years that GDP growth is higher when there is a bumper harvest than not. I strongly disagree with the notion that fertilzer subsidies have little impact on improvements in yields, and the that improved seeds and other factors contribute to that. Yes, the subsidy program in Zambia comes with supply of the good seed leading to good harvest, just good seed and no fertilizer will not lead to a good yield. Saying that governments should channel the subsidy money to longer term investments, well, that has not happened even when there were no subsidies. We shouldn't blame the subsidies for lack of longer term investments. I think the right way is for the governments to, over and above the subsidies, also make longer time investments while preparing the small scale farmers to be self sufficient. By the way, why is it wrong for the poor countries to ensure food security by providing subsidies while it is correct for the rich countries to do the same. I find that to be very hypocritical.