MALAWI – Local farmers in Malawi are taking proactive measures to combat the impact of climate change induced drought by planting more drought-tolerant crops.

Malawi continues to grapple with a severe drought that has devastated much of southern Africa in recent months.

These efforts are aimed at addressing the impact of climate change and secure the nation’s food supply.

As Malawi faces a significant food crisis, the focus has shifted to helping the agricultural industry adapt to frequent and intense droughts.

Farmers are now cultivating drought-resistant crops such as cassava, sweet potatoes, and groundnuts. This strategy is proving successful.

“Cassava is a profitable crop for my family and me. We sell it from October to January when money is scarce, and the earnings allow me to buy fertilizer for maize farming,” said cassava farmer Alimanto Masten Phiri.

Cassava is known for its ability to thrive in dry conditions, making it a suitable crop not just for Malawi but also for other drought-affected regions in Southern Africa.

Additionally, sweet potatoes and millet, which have deep roots that can access water stored deep in the soil, are being cultivated.

The Malawian government is urging farmers to adapt to changing weather patterns to ensure the country’s food security.

Eliana Kaonga, an agribusiness trainer, emphasized the need for farmers to consider planting alternative crops in areas still receiving some rainfall.

“These crops don’t require much water, making them a good option for areas experiencing inconsistent rainfall,” Kaonga said.

Currently, farmers growing cassava and sweet potatoes are benefiting from their decision to change their approach. Their success serves as a model for how farmers can innovate to address climate challenges.

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