3 Elements Of Smallholder Agriculture

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4.2.3 Elements of smallholder agriculture It is important to have a picture of some of the key elements of smallholder agriculture that relate to livelihood (see Figure 11). Labour is one of the key features of smallholder agriculture. The family relies on its agricultural activities for most of the food consumed – be it through self-provision, non-monetary exchanges or market exchanges. The family members also engage in various activities other than farming. The farm relies on family labour with limited reliance on temporary hired labour, but may be engaged in labour exchanges within the neighbourhood or a wider kinship framework. Reciprocal relationships are important here for product or productive factor exchanges. Nevertheless, resources are vital element that comprises different assets or capital (human, natural, social, physical and financial), however, is often scarce and often affects the sustenance of a livelihood (HLPE, 2013). Smallholders typically strive to further develop their resource base to improve and enlarge agricultural production in order to go beyond setbacks. The farm sizes are often small because resources are scarce, especially land, thus unable to utilise productively to generate a decent income to meet basic needs and achieve a sustainable livelihood. Consequently, many smallholders require a high level of total factor productivity, requiring in turn a significant level of inputs (HLPE, 2013). Nevertheless, the smallholders are not poor or

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