As part of the ALIMENTERRE Festival, Agrisud organized a conference-debate on November 4th, 2021 about “Sustainable family farming dedicated to food sovereignty“, in partnership with the Institute of Tropical Geography (IGT).
Over 350 students from Félix Houphouët-Boigny University in Abidjan participated.
Agriculture in Ivory Coast: a central place in the economy
In Ivory Coast, the agricultural sector occupies a central place with 20% of the GDP and more than 50% of the working population. The vast majority of Ivorian agriculture remains family farming and is based mainly on food crops, including cassava, and industrial crops which represent more than 60% of export earnings.
Camille MOULENE, representative of Agrisud in Côte d’Ivoire, and Professor ADAYE, teacher and researcher at the Institute of Tropical Geography intervened to debate the link between agriculture and food in Côte d’Ivoire.
Ivorian agriculture facing different challenges
Throughout the discussions, various issues were raised: interactions between local and international, territorialized food systems, the need to raise awareness of responsible food, the link between agroecology and resilience to the effects of climate change, but also the various agricultural policies in Ivory Coast and the problem of urbanization threatening family farming on the outskirts of cities.
The conclusions drawn from this conference-debate are clear. Ivorian agriculture must meet new challenges with, among others, according to the IGT:
- better organization of the food sector;
- the necessary preservation of natural resources and the fight against pollution;
- improving the performance of the sector for an agricultural economy with high added value.
These challenges are partly addressed by the PROFIT project, which aims to strengthen the productivity, profitability and sustainability of subsistence agriculture and the Attiéké sector as well as to support the economic and social dynamics carried by the stakeholders of the territory of the Autonomous district of Abidjan.
The conference-debate not only made it possible to make IGT students aware about agricultural issues in Ivory Coast, but also to make them think about different solutions to make this family farming a viable and sustainable agriculture, by responding to many social and environmental issues.