The state of food and agriculture 2010-11

[Women in agriculture - closing the gender gap for development]

This edition of The State of Food and Agriculture addresses Women in agriculture:closing the gender gap for development.
The agriculture sector is underperforming in many developing countries, and one of the key reasons is that women do not have equal access to the resources and opportunities they need to be more productive. This report clearly confirms that the Millennium Development Goals on gender equality (MDG 3) and poverty and food security (MDG 1) are mutually reinforcing. We must promote gender equality and empower women in agriculture to win, sustainably, the fight against hunger and extreme poverty. I firmly believe that achieving MDG 3 can help us achieve MDG 1. Women make crucial contributions in agriculture and rural enterprises in all developing country regions, as farmers, workers and entrepreneurs. Their roles vary across regions but, everywhere, women face gender-specific constraints that reduce their productivity and limit their contributions to agricultural production, economic growth and the well-being of their families, communities and countries. Women face a serious gender gap in access to productive resources. Women control less land than men and the land they control is often of poorer quality and their tenure is insecure. Women own fewer of the working animals needed in farming. They also frequently do not control the income from the typically small animals they manage. Women farmers are less likely than men to use modern inputs such as improved seeds, fertilizers, pest control measures and mechanical tools. They also use less credit and often do not control the credit they obtain.
Finally, women have less education and less access to extension services, which make it more difficult to gain access to and use some of the other resources, such as land, credit and fertilizer. These factors also prevent women from adopting new technologies as readily as men do. The constraints women face are often interrelated and need to be addressed holistically.

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StateofFood&Agriculture2011.pdf3.33 MB
Date and language
Mar 2011
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