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Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization








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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization 2016
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    Mechanization covers all levels of farming and processing technologies, from simple and basic hand tools to more sophisticated and motorized equipment. It eases and reduces hard labour, relieves labour shortages, improves productivity and timeliness of agricultural operations, improves the efficient use of resources, enhances market access and contributes to mitigating climate related hazards.
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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization for Africa
    Equipping small-scale farmers to boost sustainable agricultural productivity
    2020
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    Mechanization and related innovations are crucial if the world is to transition to sustainable agriculture. Digital tools and platforms are driving mechanization service provision along the value chain. In 2018, FAO and the African Union launched the Framework for Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization for Africa (SAMA), setting out a long-term vision and national and regional priorities, emphasizing cooperation with the agricultural machinery industry. Interventions aim to move smallholders from hand tool-based labour to innovative technologies. Sustainable mechanization cuts working time, relieves labour shortages, raises productivity and encourages youth into agriculture, creating jobs. It aids efficient use of agricultural resources, helping to mitigate the effects of climate change by reducing harmful emissions and increasing farmer resilience. Better access to tools and technologies allows farmers to leapfrog from subsistence to market-oriented farming, boosting the sector. Increased mechanization does not necessarily mean big investment in bulky machinery. It should focus on sustainable production through conservation agriculture, promoting and scaling up innovations and appropriate technologies (digital tools and precision equipment) and bolstering national capacity to promote progress towards sustainable agriculture and socioeconomic development. FAO is boosting the capacity of African smallholders and hire services to develop businesses that use and provide mechanization services. The initiative aims to upscale practices and improve smallholders’ inclusive technological access, particularly the poor, vulnerable, women and youth, in locations where it is needed most. It will have significant impact on all aspects of sustainability, from agricultural production and income generation to policy and trade.
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    Document
    Consultative Meeting on Mechanization Strategy: New Models for Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization in sub-Saharan Africa 2017
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    Sustainable agricultural mechanization (SAM) is an essential input for the development of the smallholder farm sector in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The benefits of SAM range from drudgery reduction to improved timeliness of agricultural operations, increased input use efficiency, facilitating sustainable production intensification, ensuring environmental protection, and contributing to make agriculture more ‘climate-smart’. SAM is also important at other levels of the food supply system, for exam ple in post-harvest operations, processing, marketing and transportation. Previously in SSA, mechanization efforts were largely been driven by the public sector. Today there is a need, with appropriate social and natural environmental considerations, to adopt a more holistic view of what mechanization is and learn from the errors made in the past. A cornerstone of SAM is the importance of involving the private sector (especially machinery manufacturers, suppliers and service providers). It needs to be brought to the forefront in SAM development and provision, but without neglecting the important role that the public sector and its institutions can also play. The Consultative Meeting provided a platform to discuss SAM in general, SAM strategies and implementation options, experiences and recommended concrete lines of future action for SSA. Lessons learned from Asia and past experiences in SSA were presented, as well as various models for SAM collaboration and diffusion in SSA. This plat form allowed to better understand appropriate policies that may be required to support and promote the implementation of SAM at regional and national level within SSA. A special focus was placed on three key areas which were the subject of debate and discussion in three working groups. These were: (i) new collaborative models of public-private partnerships; (ii) modalities and approaches for establishing a global SAM knowledge exchange platform and; (iii) the establishment of regional centres or networks for SAM in SSA. The Meeting also received feedback on the on-going FAO-African Union Commission technical cooperation project that is seeking to develop a SAM strategy framework for SSA.

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