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MSU AFRE Food Security
International Updates




July 15, 2015

Food Security Group



Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics


Michigan State University

The FAO, African Development Bank and ECOWAS have just released Agricultural Growth in West Africa: Market and Policy Drivers, a book by Frank Hollinger of the FAO and John Staatz of MSU.  This study analyzes the forces shaping agrifood system development in West Africa and their implications for agricultural and food policies, especially in the context of CAADP.


West African Agriculture is at a turning point. The combination of strong demand growth, sustained economic growth, higher global agricultural prices, and an improved policy environment has generated the most conducive conditions for Agricultural growth in over 30 years. West African countries and their Development Partners now clearly recognize the sector’s vital importance for broad-based growth, food security, improved nutrition and poverty reduction. At the same time, a combination of old and new challenges ranging from climate change to increased price volatility threaten the ability of West Africans to seize these opportunities.

In view of the challenges and opportunities facing West African Agriculture, the African Development Bank (AfDB), with support from the Government of France, partnered with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to conduct a joint analytical study entitled Agricultural Growth in West Africa (AGWA): Market and Policy Drivers. The study contributes to a better understanding of the evolving context for growth in West Africa’s agrifood sector by: (1) examining the drivers and trends affecting the demand for and supply of agrifood products, (2) evaluating the performance of the Agricultural sector and related policies in the light of those trends and (3) distilling the main implications for future policy priorities.

The book, available in English and French, can be downloaded for free at the following sites:

English Press release and download link:

French Press release and download link: