Zambia is a landlocked country in Southern Africa with a population of about 16 million people. The agricultural sector contributes around 20% to GDP and employs 67% of the workforce. Although the government considers the agricultural sector to be the most important engine for economic development, the increase in agri­cultural production was not able to keep up with growth in the domestic demand. Maize is by far the most important agricultural crop, both in terms of cultivated land area and exports. Other important supply chains include soybean, cotton, peanuts, beans, milk, and poultry. Undernutrition is a pressing problem in Zambia, as half the popultion is unable to meet minimum dietary energy requirements and is chronically undernourished. This translates into high  stunting rates, affecting 40% of children.

Read the full country dossier here, see the Zambia farmer innovation contest page here, and read the country innovation study on the status of agricultural innovations, innovation platforms and innovation investments in Zambia here.

Agricultural Typology of Zambia:

Source: Maruyama et al. (2018)


Zambia on


The farming question: Intergenerational linkages, gender and youth aspirations in rural Zambia

Determinants of uptake and strategies to improve agricultural insurance in Africa: a review

Role of Farmers’ Organizations in Agricultural Transformation in Africa: Overview of Continental, Regional, and Selected National Level Organizations

Edible weeds and food and nutrition security in the face of the herbicide revolution

Strategies for Transforming Smallholder Farming in Africa

Between pandemics and famines: Towards nutrition-sensitive lockdowns during Covid-19 and beyond

‘We would rather die from Covid-19 than from hunger´ – Exploring lockdown stringencies in five African countries

Using smartphone app collected data to explore the link between mechanization and intra-household allocation of time in Zambia

From Potentials to Reality: Transforming Africa’s Food Production

2020 | H. Baumüller | J. von Braun | A. Admassie | O. Badiane | E. Baraké | J. Börner | I. Bozic | B. Chichaibelu | J. Collins | T. Daum | T. Gatiso | N. Gerber | T. Getahun | K. Glatzel | S. Hendriks | O. Kirui | L. Kornher | Z. Kubik | E. Lüdeling | A. Mirzabaev | P.G. Ndiaye | T. Sakketa | M. Shah | G. Tadesse | J. Walakira

The report is avalailable in English and German.

Read the press release to the report here.Read more From Potentials to Reality: Transforming Africa’s Food Production

Investing Sustainably in African Livestock Development: Opportunities and Trade-Offs

India-Africa Partnership in Trade and Investment: With focus on the Agriculture and Food Sector

PARI Policy Brief No. 21: The Forgotten Agriculture-Nutrition Link

PARI Policy Brief No. 20: What are the Effects of Agricultural Mechanization?

Copyright or copyleft: An assessment of farmer-innovators’ attitudes towards intellectual property rights

PARI Policy Brief No. 18: Mechanizing African Agriculture

The forgotten agriculture-nutrition link: Estimating the energy requirements of different farming technologies in rural Zambia

Can small farms benefit from big companies’ initiatives to promote mechanization in Africa? A case study from Zambia

PARI Policy Brief No. 13: How to Keep Tractors Running in Africa?

Times Have Changed – Using a Pictorial Smartphone App to Collect Time–Use Data in Rural Zambia

Smartphone Apps as a new method to collect data on smallholder farming systems in the digital age: A case study from Zambia

Of Bulls and Bulbs – Aspirations and Perceptions of Rural Youth in Zambia

Pathways for Improved Nutrition in Zambia: Lessons from Pro-Vitamin A rich Maize Innovation Platform

Mechanization in African Agriculture: A Continental Overview on Patterns and Dynamics

Differential Impacts of Conservation Agriculture Technology Options on Household Income in Sub-Saharan Africa

PARI Policy Brief No. 9: Innovation for Sustainable Agricultural Growth in Africa – Insights from Research Dossiers on 12 PARI Partner Countries

Recognizing and rewarding farmers’ creativity through contests: experiences and insights from four African countries

Innovation for Sustainable Agricultural Growth – 12 Country Dossiers

Change in crop management strategies could double the maize yield in Africa

PARI Poster: Recognizing Farmer Innovators in Africa

The ReSAKSS Country eAtlases


The ReSAKSS Country eAtlases is a GIS-based mapping tool designed to help policy analysts and policymakers access and use high quality and highly disaggregated data on agricultural, socio-economic, and bio-physical indicators to guide agricultural policy and investment decisions.

Smartphone App: TimeTracker

Country Innovation Studies

2016 | Prepared by the PARI national partners and FARA

The Innovation Studies for the 12 African PARI countries provide an overview of the status of agricultural innovations, innovation platforms and innovation investment in the respective country. Read more Country Innovation Studies

On the use of agricultural system models for exploring technological innovations across scales in Africa: A critical review

2016 | R.P. Rötter | F.L. Sehomi | J.G. Höhn | J.K. Niemi | M. van den Berg

Published as: ZEF – Discussion Papers on Development Policy No. 23, Center for Development Research, Bonn.

Download full paper

Download literature database

PARI Policy Brief No. 1: Strategic Directions for Development Collaboration for Food Security and Agricultural Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa

Tapping Potentials of Innovation for Food Security and Sustainable Agricultural Growth – an Africa-wide Perspective

Report on Potentials and Cooperation Opportunities in African Countries

Potentials and Possibilities for German Collaboration in Agriculture – 12 Country Dossiers

Regional trade and volatility in staple food markets in Africa