Food and agriculture
Agriculture forms the largest part of our project work.
Our projects target mainly women, the elderly and other vulnerable groups.
Over 840 million people remain undernourished, despite increases in world food production. Most of the world’s hungry are in rural households, dependent on agriculture or the use of natural resources for their livelihood.
But we have demonstrated that there is an alternative to industrial production of food, that the technologies we have adopted for small-scale, ecologically-sustainable food production can work.
Using our experience in making markets work for the poor, and agricultural policies which have the right to food at their centre, we can achieve technology justice, poverty reduction and sustainability.
Using technology to challenge poverty
Projects like this depend on your support. Please help us to work with communities around the world to save lives and improve livelihoods.
Our programme work
Our goal is for a transition to sustainable systems of agriculture and natural resources that provide food security for the rural poor.
Practical Action does not have a ‘one size fits all approach’. We work with communities to identify the most appropriate entry points for long-term and sustainable change.
We have programmes and projects to improve food production in countries across the world, from Boliva to Bangladesh, Nepal to Zimbabwe.
Through practical experience we have developed key areas of action in building resilience:
- Empowering communities and representative institutions
- Building technical capacities
- Alternative livelihoods
- Natural resource management
- Reducing risks
- Women and agriculture
Our technical information service offers free downloads on a range of topics related to food and agriculture, including:
We also have a technical enquiry service where anyone working in poverty reduction, or on small-scale technology projects, can ask a question and receive a response from our local experts free of charge
Sharing knowledge where it counts
We have many solutions that can improve food security and livelihoods, but it is important to share these as widely as possible. In particular, farmer-to-farmer sharing of knowledge and experience can spread new ideas and approaches to deliver the maximum impact.
Blogs - food & agriculture
On 16th and 17th February, the MasterCard Foundation will host the Young Africa Works Summit in Kigali, Rwanda, to address the opportunities for empowering young people to drive transformational change in African agriculture. Practical Action will be there to share evidence from its work of how technologies – from MP3 podcasts, to solar irrigation systems – can support young people to lead productive lives in agricultural areas, and move towards more sustainable, resilie...
-- By Buddhiram Kumal & Dinanath Bhandari
Building on the strength of the farmers’ field schools (FFS), Nepal Flood Resilience Project has devised the FFS to train and help farmers further to adopt flood resilient technologies, strategies and approaches to transform their vulnerability into resilience. Here’s how we are making farmers flood resilient through this academy for flood resilience.
1. Organising to learn
Farmers’ field schools are proven approaches and strat...
"This is one time where television really fails to capture the true excitement of a large squirrel predicting the weather". Groundhog day 1993
Practical Action has been approached by a consortia of partners to explore the issue of Climate Information Services in West Africa. We have been posed the question "Is it possible to map the Climate Information Services system in the region and would mapping help to make the system work better for rain fed marginalised farmers?" This is par...
Enneta Kudumba is one of the many farmers in Mutasa district, Manicaland Province who have successfully employed new farming technologies and methods to enhance their harvests given the detrimental effects of climate change. 54 year old Enneta from Nyachibva Village explains.
“I have been growing maize on large pieces of land for years, but with limited satisfaction due to erratic rainfall patterns. However, I am happy that the zai pit technology has brought fortunes and my pr...
The Livestock Epidemio Surveillance Programme (LESP-ES) aims to improve the livelihoods and resilience to food insecurity of about 427,000 vulnerable rural smallholders in the three Eastern Sudan states Kassala, Gedaref and Red Sea. The planned interventions aim to strengthen the technical capacities of regional veterinary services through achieving three results:
- Technical capacities for coordinated epidemio-surveillance and control of trans-boundary animal diseases strengthen...