Contribution of Climate-Smart Agriculture Technologies to Food Self-Sufficiency of Smallholder Households in Mali

Traore, B and Zemadim, B and Sangaré, S and Gumma, M K and Tabo, R and Whitbread, A M (2021) Contribution of Climate-Smart Agriculture Technologies to Food Self-Sufficiency of Smallholder Households in Mali. Sustainability (TSI), 13 (14). pp. 1-17. ISSN 2071-1050

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Climate change has resulted in food insecurity for the majority of farming communities in the Sudano-Sahelian zone of Mali. In this paper, we present a methodology for scaling climate-smart agriculture (CSA) technologies such as Contour Bunding (CB), Microdosing (MD), Intercropping (IC), Zaï pits, and Adapted crop Variety (AV) treatments, and evaluated their contribution to smallholder households’ food self-sufficiency. We used the participatory technology selection method and onfarm demonstration in order to tackle farm-related constraints. The study found that there has been a major shift in the spatial distribution of land use/land cover (LULC) classes between 2016 and 2020. About 25% of the areas changed from other land use/land cover to cropland. Crop yields obtained from CSA-treated fields were significantly higher than yields from farmers’ practice (FP). The application of CSA technologies resulted in millet yield increases by 51%, 35%, and 23% with contour bunding (CB), microdosing (MD) and intercropping (IC), respectively. With Zaï pits and adapted variety (AV) treatments, the yield increases were 69% and 27%, respectively. Further, the use of IC and MD technologies reduced the food-insecure household status to 13%, which corresponds to a food insecurity reduction of 60%. The application of Zaï technology reversed the negative status of food-insecurity to +4%, corresponding to a reduction in food insecurity of more than 100%. In the case of food-secure households, the application of CSA technologies led to increased food production. However, notwithstanding this, prospects for CSA in the Sahel hinge on the capacities of farming households and local extension agents to understand the environmental, economic and social challenges in the context of climate change, and consequently to self-mobilize in order to select and implement responsive technologies.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Research Program : West & Central Africa
CRP: CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Millet yield, Sustainability, Food security, Sudano-Sahelian, Climate change
Subjects: Mandate crops > Millets
Others > Sustainable Agriculture
Others > Climate Change
Others > Food Security
Depositing User: Mr Arun S
Date Deposited: 16 Jul 2021 07:01
Last Modified: 16 Jul 2021 07:01
Official URL:
Acknowledgement: We acknowledge and thank the Africa RISING project in Mali for supporting data analysis and the scientific publication of the work. The co-authors, AMW, MKG acknowledge salary support from the CGIAR Research Programs on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) carried out with support from the CGIAR Trust Fund funders/, accessed on 6 July 2021. We thank also the three reviewers for their detailed comments that helped us to improve the manuscript.
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