Zambia’s cotton at a crossroads

December 13, 2017

Cotton growing is an important income-generating activity for Zambian smallholder farms, who use it to earn cash to pay for school fees, housing, and other necessities.

But the Zambian cotton industry is now plagued by persistent low productivity, with the practice of ‘side-trading’ – farmers and cotton companies trading with each other illegally, outside of or breaking formal contracts – a key challenge.

A new video commissioned by DEGRP-funded researchers at IIED looks at the practice of side-trading in the cotton industry, interviewing cotton farmers and cotton industry officials for their views on what can be done to resolve the issue.