Is Africa ready to climb the value chain in agriculture?

Five hundred million. That’s the official estimate, the number that practitioners arrive at from a range of 200 to 900 million. That is the number of farmers in the world, and it makes a lot of eyes pop in development circles.
Take for example the most recent agribusiness value-chain event, Making the Connection: value chains for transforming small holder , which convened recently in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. While the 500 attendees represented the private sector, government, civil society, farmers’ organizations and academia, almost all discussions had a way of looping back to one topic: smallholders.Why is it that the attendees were so fixated on the farming segment of the ? Is Africa not yet ready to climb past the very first rung of the ? Today, it is estimated that a mere 10% of the global agricultural production undergoes processing.

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