On August 3, 2021, African faith leaders presented their open letter to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation demanding that it stop promoting industrial agriculture in Africa. They joined the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA) on September 2 to demand that donors stop funding the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). AFSA in June sent a letter to the
Gates Foundation and other donors, including USAID, UKAID, and the Rockefeller Foundation, to shift their funding away from AGRA and toward agroecology. They received few responses and no evidence of AGRA’s effectiveness.
According to research by IATP’s Timothy A. Wise, the Green Revolution in Africa has failed to deliver on its goals of doubling productivity and incomes for 30 million small-scale farming households while reducing food insecurity by half by 2020. Far from reducing hunger, the number of undernourished people in AGRA’s 13 focus countries increased 30% since AGRA’s founding in 2006.
AGRA has offered no credible evidence of its success, yet its leaders are reportedly preparing a fund drive to raise $1 billion in new funding at the September African Green Revolution Forum hosted by AGRA. AGRA’s Board Chair defended the program in an opinion piece. AFSA responded with its own opinion piece: “Time to change course: The future is agroecology.”
AGRA’s board chair defended the program in an opinion piece. AFSA responded with its own opinion piece: “Time to change course: The future is agroecology.” IATP’s Wise, who directs IATP’s Future of Food project, published his own response AGRA’s opinion: “Time to change course, not double down on failing Green Revolution.”