How helping women in agriculture elevates a country


Closing the gender gap could increase yields on women-run farms by 20-30%. This could raise total agricultural output in developing countries by 2.5- 4%. But women own fewer assets (land, livestock, human capital), and have less access to inputs (seeds, fertilizer, labor, finance) and services (training, insurance,) than men.


How can we help women improve their agriculture skills?

And, in 2016 alone, Feed the Future, the U.S. government’s global hunger and food-security initiative, helped nearly 2.4 million women improve their agriculture- and food-security-related skills, and helped more than 420,000 women access agriculture-related credit.

What percentage of agricultural workers in developing countries are women?

In developing countries, 43 percent of those workers are women. Clearly, female agricultural workers play an important role in feeding the world.

What is the role of women in agriculture in Ghana?

“In Ghana, women like me cultivate most of our country’s vegetables, cereals, and other food crops. Even with cash crops such as cocoa, which are mostly owned by men, we weed, harvest and transport the final product to marketplaces. One major problem is that we don’t benefit from the latest technologies.

Are women the future of Agriculture?

“Women have been a critical part of farm and ranch operations across the country—and around the globe—for centuries. But now, as women in agriculture, we have a unique opportunity to be the change we want to see in our industry.”


How can empowering women in agriculture impact countries?

Research has also shown that empowering women can lead to improvements in their status both inside and outside the household—including greater control over household resources; better mental health; reduced time constraints; and increased access to financial services, health care, skills development, income-earning …

How important is the role of women in agriculture?

Women have always played a vital role on the farm. They work the fields, birth livestock, do daily chores, keep the books, and take an active role in farm management decisions. And, often, they bring their own twist on farming.

How has the role of women in agriculture change?

Women still provide more unpaid farm labor than men, but the share of women who do so as their primary employment is decreasing. Women’s participation in agricultural and non-agricultural self-employment, as well as paid employment, rose over time. These changes could indicate increased economic empowerment of women.

Do women in agriculture live in developing countries or developed countries?

Women are the backbone of the rural economy, especially in developing countries. They make up almost half of the world’s farmers, and over the last few decades, they have broadened their involvement in agriculture. The number of female-headed households has also increased as more men have migrated to cities.

How do women contribute to rural development?

Rural women play a key role in supporting their households and communities in achieving food and nutrition security, generating income, and improving rural livelihoods and overall well-being. They contribute to agriculture and rural enterprises and fuel local and global economies.

What impact do women have on agriculture and food supply?

It’s estimated that women produce approximately 60-80% of food in the world and they represent 20% of the agricultural labor force in the region. Furthermore, they produce, process and prepare the majority of available foods, and are thus key with respect to food security in their families and communities.

Why women should be empowered in agriculture?

Growth in small-scale agriculture is two to four times more effective at reducing hunger and poverty than any other sector, and women farmers are playing a central role. Now it is more important than ever to empower women farmers to ensure resilience to climate change and to end world hunger.

What are the important roles of women that they contribute in the development and progress of the country?

Women are the primary caretakers of children and elders in every country of the world. International studies demonstrate that when the economy and political organization of a society change, women take the lead in helping the family adjust to new realities and challenges.

Why is women in agriculture important?

As the international community commits to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, and to protecting our natural resources while alleviating poverty, women in agriculture will be at the forefront, driving meaningful change in the developing world.

How many women work in agriculture?

Supporting Women in Agriculture. Today, more than one billion people work in agriculture around the world. In developing countries, 43 percent of those workers are women. Clearly, female agricultural workers play an important role in feeding the world.

How does productivity advancement benefit women?

These productivity advancements in turn improve day-to-day life for female agricultural laborers. But they also benefit their families and communities over the long-term, as studies suggest that female farmers who increase their income reinvest that money into the family’s health and education.

Do farmers take genetically modified crops for granted?

One major problem is that we don’t benefit from the latest technologies. Throughout North and South America, farmers take genetically modified crops for granted.

What is the gender gap in agriculture?

Regardless of their active role in agriculture, women own fewer assets, have less access to necessary agricultural yields and receive less education and training in these areas compared to men in Sub-Saharan Africa. The main cause of this persistent gap is established traditional gender roles. …

How effective is agriculture in Africa?

Ruth Meinzen-Dick explains that in Sub-Saharan Africa, agriculture is two to four times more effective in reducing poverty than growth in other sectors. She explains further that because women are more likely than men to invest resources into meeting their children’s educational and nutritional needs, investing in women is crucial.

What are the benefits of female empowerment?

Although the benefits of female empowerment are clear to see, in order to make these benefits a reality, it is imperative that programs and policies target three main factors: land rights, equal access to agricultural resources and finances and equal power in decision-making. Furthermore, as more women become educated and empowered, these investments and knowledge will not only be passed on to their children but throughout the community. As explained by Slyvia Tetteh, “When mothers are educated, they keep their education in their home and use it to educate their children. If you educate a woman, you educate her home and to some extent, the community.”

How does gender affect Africa?

Women often face more difficulties in owning land, establishing credit and gaining access to proper resources. When given the proper tools, these women could have a substantial positive effect on both the economy and SSA’s agricultural output.

What is the agricultural sector?

The agricultural sector is a critical facet of Sub-Saharan Africa’s (SSA) economy. As of 2015, women make up around 40% of the SSA’s agricultural labor force. Although their contribution is critical, due to discriminatory laws and social norms, a large gender gap within this sector continues to persist.

Why is female empowerment important in Africa?

Doing so would not only increase the lives and quality of living for these women but would also positively impact the agricultural output and the general state of Africa’s economy. Furthermore, this could also create more stability for the children growing up in rural communities. With the knowledge that mothers gain, this knowledge can then be passed down to their children and the rise in income can be invested in the children’s future. If properly prioritized and applied, empowering women in agriculture could break intergenerational cycles of poverty, reduce hunger and malnutrition rates and improve Africa’s economy as a whole.

Why is closing the gender gap important?

Closing the gender gap is imperative to making progress in SSA’s economy and increasing agricultural output. By empowering female agricultural workers and increasing their access to finances, land rights, resources and training, there could be a significant positive effect for the whole of Africa.

How much of the agricultural workforce is women?

Women make up almost half of the agricultural labour force in developing countries, but their productivity could be significantly increased with the right skills and training, and access to other key inputs such as finance and land rights.

Why is learning relevant new agri skills important?

Learning relevant new agri-skills would help women in agriculture to understand and use the ever-increasing technology available, and enable them to make better decisions on how to deal with climate change, improve yields and income, and ultimately benefit food security.

Why is agriculture important for women?

This may not be news to you, but women farmers are held back by multiple barriers that prevent them from feeding their families and improving their livelihoods.

What are the roles and extent of women’s engagement in the agricultural sector?

It measures the roles and extent of women’s engagement in the agriculture sector in five domains: (1) decisions about agricultural production, (2) access to and decision making power over productive resources, (3) control over use of income, (4) leadership in the community, and (5) time use. As a bonus, it also measures women’s empowerment relative …

Why is wood accessible to women?

Wood becomes accessible on their doorstep as a result of agroforestry, giving women more time and energy to focus on other things such as education or economically empowering activities.

Why do women have more power over the harvested crops?

Women have more power over the harvested crops, which is why they profit most from the benefits of agroforestry, such as higher yields. Women are also in charge of collecting firewood and water for the household, particularly in developing countries.

What are the factors that contribute to female empowerment?

While the advantages of female empowerment are obvious, programs and policies must focus on three key factors: land rights, equitable access to agricultural resources and finances , and equal influence in decision-making. Source: Laikipia Permaculture Center (LPC) Kenya.

Why are women farmers being held back?

Women farmers are not only being held back because they are women, but they also faced the challenges felt by all small scale farmers. For starters, they have less access to land, loans and machinery than men do. They also carry the famous “double-burden” of paid work and unpaid childcare/home labour.

How does agriculture address women’s issues?

Agriculture programs may address this issue by taking deliberate and thoughtful steps, such as taking into account women’s workloads and availability when arranging meetings or training events, as well as when organizing activities that require their time.

How can rural women benefit from resources?

The right resources could help rural women maximize economic opportunities, increase productivity, and improve food security, education and healthcare, since women tend to reinvest in their households.

Why is inclusive value chain important?

Inclusive value chains also offer work opportunities for women and men off the farm. Improve rural women’s access to training and information: Knowledge of farming techniques is critical to productivity, however women farmers have inadequate access to agricultural extension and training services. It is also important that training …

Do women farmers need equal access to resources?

To further complicate things, equal access to resources does not guarantee equal returns for women farmers. Women need specialized agricultural training, child care and customized support to ease their double work load as farmers and caregivers.

Current Issues for Rural Women

Women and girls in rural areas suffer disproportionately from multi-dimensional poverty. This is a systematic problem.

Rural Women in Agriculture

Women account for a substantial proportion of the agricultural labor force, making significant contributions to food production, food security, land management, and building climate resilience.

Time to Change the Rhetoric

At Bountifield International, we recognize that agriculture and gender equality are inextricably linked. Across Africa, women account for an average of 60% of the agriculture workforce yet have less access to beneficial resources that are more often available to men, including business education, technical support, and financial capital.

The Women of Bountifield

Lucy Igunda is a mother of three and a successful working woman in agriculture. At her farm in Kenya, she supplies East African Breweries Limited (EABL) with sorghum for brewing beer, aggregates maize, and grows and shells groundnuts.

What are the obstacles women face in farming?

The problem? Gender-specific obstacles—such as lack of access to land, financing, markets, agricultural training and education, suitable working conditions, and equal treatment —put female farmers at a significant disadvantage before they ever plow a field or sow a seed. Arguably, the biggest roadblock is land rights.

Where do women harvest pineapples?

Right: A woman harvests pineapples in North East India, a remote and largely unexplored region bordered by the Himalayas. Photograph by Alex Treadway. A worldwide effort to level the agricultural playing field for female farmers is gaining momentum.

How many people are undernourished in the world?

According to the FAO, most of the approximately 820 million people worldwide who are currently undernourished live in developing countries—the same places where women are key to food production.

Who owns Heritage Homestead Goat Dairy?

The idea that closing the gender gap in farming would produce more food and long-term benefits for farm families and their neighbors doesn’t surprise Crumpler, North Carolina farmer Carol Coulter, 62, owner of Heritage Homestead Goat Dairy.

Is the face of farming female?

It does not necessarily reflect the views of National Geographic or its editorial staff. In much of the world, the face of farming is female. Globally, reports the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the majority of economically active women in the least-developed countries work in agriculture.

Is the World Bank gender equity?

The World Bank also has made gender equity in the agriculture and food sector a specific goal and is working to expand women’s access to land and rural finance. And, in 2016 alone, Feed the Future, the U.S. government’s global hunger and food-security initiative, helped nearly 2.4 million women improve their agriculture- …


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