Integrated pest management for resource-poor African farmers: Is the emperor naked?
MetadataShow full item record
The success of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) with rice in Asia has not been replicated with staple smallholder food crops in sub-Saharan Africa. This is variously blamed on inadequate extension, underinvestment in agricultural research, and unfavorable government policies. This article argues that it reflects the slow progress of Africa's Green Revolution, which has reduced economic incentives for chemical forms of crop protection and thus the potential cost-savings from the adoption of IPM strategies. In this context, IPM must re-think its approach. IPM is more likely to be adopted by resource-poor African farmers if it focuses on host plant resistance and biological control, high-value commodities, and helps meet farmers' wider objectives of increasing household food security and earning cash income. The argument is illustrated from secondary literature and recent project experience in southern Malawi.