• Collective growth

    Collective growth

    In Zambia’s Kafue district, construction has begun on an irrigation project that aims to improve small-scale farming productivity.

    Located some 40 km south of Lusaka, the Chiansi Irrigation Scheme will provide the canal infrastructure to irrigate 3 800 ha, while a 1 336 ha commercial farm will also be developed, according to InfraCo Africa.

    The project is an expansion of the Chanyanya pilot, which is also based in Kafue and saw the establishment of a smallholders’ co-op that collectively leased land to develop a 148 ha commercial farm, supported by irrigation infrastructure.

    In line with Zambia’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, the Chiansi project is expected to become operational in 2020, benefiting surrounding communities, creating employment opportunities and providing training for local farmers.

    ‘This project could not have come at a more appropriate time,’ Michael Katambo, Zambia’s Minister of Agriculture, said at the groundbreaking ceremony. ‘With the threat of climate change, irrigation is needed to boost production and to enhance food security. Agriculture is a lifeline for all of us.’

    27 August 2019
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images