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Document Abstract
Published: 2002

Fighting famine in Southern Africa: steps out of the crisis

Briefing on options for Southern African famine mitigation strategies
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Briefing paper on policy approaches that IFPRI research in Africa has shown to be effective in fighting famine. Recommendations include:
  • Make food available to those suffering most as fast as possible
  • Distribute food to people where they live
  • Target the most affected areas first
  • Use standardized and formal guidelines for distribution
  • Within areas, aim assistance at the neediest households
  • Invest in health services during famine relief and recovery
  • Implement labor-intensive public works programs.
  • Target public works schemes to poor households
  • Provide payment in the form of food when food prices are too high
  • Implement supplementary programs to assist destitute households that cannot participate in public works schemes
  • Encourage the private sector to implement employment schemes for the poor
  • Develop public and private partnerships to make food more available
  • Deliver agricultural inputs to farmers for the next growing season
  • Introduce agricultural technologies appropriate to the situation
  • Encourage farmers to produce staple food crops
  • Develop institutions to improve farmers’ access to and use of new technologies and assets
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