Rice has become a major staple food in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). It is the single most important source of dietary energy in West Africa and the third most important for SSA. Demand is growing faster than for any other food staple, because of changes in consumer preferences, rapid urbanization and population growth.
In the aftermath of the rice crisis in 2007/2008 in SSA, mostly related to high rice prices, many African countries planned to boost domestic rice production in pursuit of self-sufficiency. However, despite significant increases in production, SSA has become increasingly dependent on rice imports, raising concerns for policy regarding food security.
The Africa Rice Center (AfricaRice) is pleased to release a new publication entitled ‘Continental Investment Plan for accelerating Rice Self-Sufficiency in Africa’ (CIPRiSSA), with support from the African Development Bank (AfDB), which has mandated the Center to lead the development of CIPRiSSA to provide support to African countries as they strive to attain rice self-sufficiency.
CIPRiSSA provides a roadmap for accelerated action to reach self-sufficiency in rice by 2025 for 10 countries in Africa, which are important in terms of rice production and consumption: Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Madagascar, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania and Uganda (taking regional trade opportunities into account).
The publication provides for each country background information on the rice value chain, the investments required in priority areas to achieve certain levels of self-sufficiency in rice, as well as the benefits and profitability of the proposed investments. It also emphasizes the vital importance of public-private-partnership for realizing the objectives set for the program.
The study was done in consultation with focal persons nominated by the Ministers of Agriculture of the 10 countries, who led in-country data collection, collation and analysis. Data collection was facilitated using a tool jointly validated by all stakeholders, including the country focal persons, AfDB, the private sector, the Coalition for African Rice Development (CARD), and AfricaRice.
“AfricaRice hopes to enrich CIPRiSSA so that it will serve as a key evidence-based policy and investment decision-making instrument for accelerating and maintaining rice self-sufficiency in the continent,” stated AfricaRice Director General Dr Harold Roy-Macauley. “It will do this through systematic biannual studies, which will be extended to other countries in collaboration with stakeholders.”
CIPRiSSA is in line with the AfDB ‘Feed Africa’ initiative which aims to transform African agriculture into a globally competitive, inclusive and business-oriented sector.
The AfricaRice Council of Ministers session held in September 2018 has tasked the Center to extend the CIPRiSSA study to other member countries, so that they can also benefit from evidence-based information on the rice value chain and the investment options required to achieve rice self-sufficiency.
To read the report online or download a pdf copy, please click here. AfricaRice welcomes comments and suggestions from stakeholders in order to further improve CIPRiSSA. Please send your comments to Dr Marcel Nwalozie (firstname.lastname@example.org).