The bio-economic impact of conservation agriculture on food security in southern Africa under drought
This study analyses the potential impact of conservation agriculture (CA) on maize production and food security under drought conditions in southern Africa. The study combines biophysical and socio-economic approaches. The biophysical approach is used to estimate the potential impact of CA on maize yields under drought conditions in southern Africa; this result is then inserted into an economic model to estimate the potential bio-economic impact of CA on food security under those conditions. The results suggest that CA could increase regional maize production and slightly enhance regional food security under drought conditions in southern Africa. The positive impact of CA on regional food security would occur under randomly distributed droughts and under consecutive two-year regional droughts. However, the slight positive impact of CA on regional food security implies that it would need to be complemented with additional measures, such as rainwater harvesting, to substantially enhance food security under severe drought conditions in southern Africa.