Feed the Future
This project is part of the U.S. Government's global hunger and food security initiative.

Helping Smallholders Make the Most of Maize Through Loans and Storage Technology: Evidence from Tanzania

Event Date: 
Feb 22, 2018
9:30 am to 11:00 am EST
Online Event


Improving staple crop production is widely viewed as crucial for increasing food security and reducing poverty in sub‐Saharan Africa (SSA). However, smallholder households in SSA who cultivate maize and other grains face two major post‐harvest challenges. First, pests cause post‐harvest loss of up to 30 percent during storage, resulting in the household having less grain to sell and consume later in the year. Second, grain prices are almost always lower at harvest than later in the season. Due to credit constraints and the need for cash to meet immediate expenses, many farmers sell at harvest.

In this month's seminar, researchers from Purdue University will share learning from a project funded by USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance that identifies successful strategies to address the dual issues of credit and post-harvest loss among southern Tanzania's smallholder farmers.

If you are in Washington, D.C., join us at 9:00 a.m. for a light breakfast and networking. Space is limited, so register today!


Lead Consultant and Graduate Research Assistant
Purdue University

Hira Channa Is currently a doctoral student and graduate research assistant in the Agricultural Economics department at Purdue University.

Her dissertation focuses on finding strategies to solve post-harvest challenges for smallholder farm households in sub-Saharan Africa. Hira has worked in Africa and Asia previously, conducting surveys in Malawi and Pakistan during her time with the International Food Policy Research Institute. She completed her master's degree in Agricultural Economics on a Fulbright Scholarship at Cornell University in 2013.

Associate Professor
Purdue University

Jacob Ricker-Gilbert is an associate professor in the department of Agricultural Economics at Purdue University.

Jacob conducts research, teaching and outreach activities that focus on helping smallholder households in sub-Saharan Africa sustainably intensify agricultural production. Jacob works on measuring the cost-effectiveness of input subsidies in SSA, the role of land rental markets in southern Africa and ways to alleviate constraints that smallholder African farmers’ face in the post-harvest season. His work on input subsidies has been recognized by the African Association of Agricultural Economists, the American Association of Agricultural Economists and the International association of Agricultural Economists. Ricker-Gilbert received his PhD in Agricultural Economics from Michigan State University in 2011.

Team Leader Food Security and Livelihoods
USAID Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance

Julie March is the Team Leader Food Security and Livelihoods for the USAID Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA).

With an academic and practical focus on agricultural, ecological and farming systems, Julie has supported the integration of systems thinking into disaster response, recovery and resilience programs. At USAID/OFDA, her work has encouraged research and programming to determine best practices in disasters to support designing interventions that build sustainable systems. One key element of this work has been to support research into post-harvest loss reduction for vulnerable farmers.


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