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Farmers and Food Systems – What Future for Small-scale Agriculture?

This study challenges the common narrative that small farms (<20ha) produce most of the food consumed in low- and middle-income countries. The researchers found 72% of the world’s 560 million small farms are less than one hectare, and very small-scale farms generally contribute little to farmers’ incomes and food value-chains. They conclude that the large bulk of small-scale farmers are not as important to feeding the world as is often claimed. This does not mean, however, that small-scale agriculture is not important. Small-scale agriculture remains critical to the livelihoods and food security of some two to three billion people.