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Linking Food Security to Gender and Land Tenure in Mozambique

By 2050 sustainable, nourishing food systems will be built on land tenure rights, climate-smart agriculture, and women’s empowerment

Photo of Caroline Moh

Written by

Lead Applicant Organization Name

Cadasta Foundation

Lead Applicant Organization Type

  • Small NGO (under 50 employees)

If part of a multi-stakeholder entity (i.e. team), provide the names of other organizations and types of stakeholders collaborating with you.

The community of Dombe will lead the positive transformation of the food system, with support from Cadasta and the partners listed below. NCBA CLUSA: In Mozambique NCBA CLUSA is integrating Cadasta community mapping tools into their Promotion of Conservation Agriculture (PROMAC) program, linking women’s empowerment, food security, and conservation farming to secure land certificates (Direito do Uso e Aproveitamento da Terra, DUAT). Fazenda de Esperança de Dombe: A Catholic mission founded to support those living in poverty in Dombe, providing farmers the means and resources to improve their livelihoods, including technical assistance on sustainable farming. Others: Ministry of Land, Environment, Rural Development (MITADER); National Directorate of Land (DINAT); government-approved local service providers involved in securing DUATs at the household and community levels; and private sector firms.

Website of Legally Registered Entity

https://cadasta.org/

How long have you / your team been working on this Vision?

  • 1-3 years

Lead Applicant: In what city or town are you located?

Washington, District of Columbia

Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?

United States of America

Your Selected Place: what’s the name of the Place you’re developing a Vision for?

Dombe Administrative Post, Sussundenga District, Manica Province

What country is your selected Place located in?

Mozambique

Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.

Cadasta has been working in Mozambique since 2017 documenting community land rights in rural areas. Cadasta enabled tour local partners to build a methodology using labor-saving technology and participatory mapping to effectively capture and strengthen land rights of local communities throughout Mozambique. Trained community facilitators in turn trained community mappers, many of them youth, to demarcate boundaries, land use, and resources of community held land. The project improved community land governance and empowered its stakeholders to make informed decisions about land-based investments and priority actions that support food security, nutrition, and environmental protection, leading to more resilient households.

Building upon this experience, Cadasta has partnered with NCBA CLUSA, operating in Mozambique since 1995, to support a conservation agriculture project, PROMAC II, that links women’s empowerment, food security and nutrition, and land rights. The team used the Cadasta Platform to accurately document land parcels and capture household data on land users as part of a government-supported effort to issue individual and family formal land “use and benefit” certificates (DUATs), which are similar to a title or deed. NCBA CLUSA started working in Dombe seven years ago when they implemented a project with the Kuguta Kuchanda Cooperative to grade and sell surplus crops. NCBA CLUSA’s mostly Mozambican staff became engaged with local producers, production systems, agribusinesses, and other key stakeholders. With technical support from Cadasta’s and NCBA CLUSA’s staff, the farmers of Dombe will implement this food security vision with the training services of local government extension officers from Sussundenga District. Our team’s local staff are highly familiar with the region and the stakeholder ecosystem that needs to be fostered and supported to ensure its success.

Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.

During the colonial era, Dombe, in Manica Province, was an agribusiness hub characterized by fazendas, or large farm estates. The fazendas were later decimated during the Civil War, when Dombe’s status as a major transport route led to it becoming an opposition stronghold. Today, Dombe has returned to its role as an agribusiness crossroads, with a large number of smallholder farmers, local and regional markets, and tremendous potential for scaling up production. Geographically, the Dombe Administrative Area forms the southern half of the rural Sussundenga District and includes at least half of Sussundenga’s population. The main physical feature of the area is the high ranges of the Chimanimani Mountains and their valleys, hemmed in by tributaries in the west of the district, and low plains of woodland savanna and swamp to the east. Low lying and tropical, Dombe is largely wetlands, rich in resources.

Historically, the population of Dombe, with an average household size of eight people, tends to live off the land clustered in small villages that are usually placed above high terraces near sources of water. The area is populated largely by the Ndau and Shona ethnic groups, with approximately 75,000 people who speak Ndau and Sena. The word “Ndau” means “place.” Catholic and Apostolic churches play an important role in the area.

The potential for a vibrant, regenerative food system is great in Dombe. Numerous crops, rich in macro and micronutrients, are grown here, including tomatoes, onions, beans, maize, sesame, pigeon pea, sorghum, rice, bananas, cassava, cotton (on higher ground), kenaf, sesame, sugarcane, mangoes, cashews, and citrus. However, Dombe’s smallholder farmers rely mostly on subsistence farming and lack access to the resources, services, and training needed to maximize agricultural output and nutritional intake. The area has never recovered its pre-Civil War capacity to produce crops, which was further damaged by the 2019 Cyclone that plunged over 3,000 people in the area into acute food insecurity.

Timber land concessions and forest preservation are putting tremendous pressure on arable land and squeezing out farming families and their modest holdings in Dombe. There has been little focus on land tenure as a lever for sustainable food systems; yet a random sample of the population surveyed indicated that one of the principal needs is an increased ability to grow and earn money from crops, an activity fundamentally dependent on land and natural resources.

What is the approximate size of your Place, in square kilometers? (New question, not required)

99999

What is the estimated population (current 2020) in your Place?

75000

Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.

2020: Dombe’s food system is already facing the effects of climate change. Land productivity has decreased due to erratic and disruptive weather patterns, affecting the area’s crops. In March 2019, within the area of Sussundenga, Dombe was the worst hit by Cyclone Idai, which led to an estimated 3,000 people becoming food insecure due to flooding-induced crop loss and damage. 

The diets in Dombe are 80% cereals and starches, with low micronutrient intake, leading to high levels of wasting and stunting (44% of children under age five). Low levels of education contribute to limited knowledge of optimal nutrition practices and limited use of innovative technologies and sustainable farming practices. Although conservation farming has been introduced in Mozambique, the farmers of Dombe still use soil depleting and environmentally damaging practices, such as slashing and burning.

Food and land tenure insecurity particularly affects women, who are less than 20 percent of the world’s landholders, but make up about 43 percent of the agricultural labor force. In Mozambique, women are typically excluded from decisions about land use, despite the fact that data shows that “women’s rights to land and productive assets are linked to enhanced status, improved living conditions, better nutrition and food sovereignty, improved health and education outcomes, higher earning and individual savings, and better access to credit, as well as better protection from gender violence” (Landesa, 2017).

The women of Dombe make up over half of its farmers and practice subsistence farming without secure land rights or the ability to make decisions that affect them.  Cultural norms and practices often prevent women from owning and inheriting land, contributing to insecurity and negatively impacting behaviors around climate-smart farming, investment, and consumption. This “perfect storm” of lack of land rights, lack of gender inclusion, and increasing negative effects of climate change has had an economic ripple effect that will hamper Dombe’s residents’ ability to practice regenerative farming and consume and market nourishing, sustainable foods.

2050: Climate change effects will worsen unless serious commitments and steps are taken by stakeholders at every level. Without a shared local vision and action plan that changes Dombe’s trajectory and a policy framework and resources to support them, the potential of Dombe’s rich land and human capital will be squandered. Without an infusion of investment, training, and technology to recover from recurring disasters, Dombe will stagnate and fail to progress. If farmers do not feel secure about their land ownership, they will not invest in climate-smart agriculture to preserve and sustain the soil and water. If the private sector finds investments to be too risky due to unclear property claims and lack of farmer investment, companies will not invest. If women are not empowered to own and manage land there will be higher malnutrition, lower incomes, migration, and a less vibrant future. 

Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.

Interconnected Approach: There is no single intervention or technology that will deliver a regenerative food system. There are no silver bullets. Only a holistic, integrated approach that is led by the people of Dombe and considers the full cultural, economic, environmental, political, and social realities will deliver. Our vision integrates three transformational drivers that together will create the conditions and capacities to create a nourishing and sustainable food system:  land rights, women’s empowerment, and climate-smart farming practices. Our vision provides practical, interconnected community-led solutions that work for the people of Dombe.

Land Rights: Land rights enable, cultivate, and protect resources. They provide the security and confidence of ownership, particularly for women, that drives positive behaviors like investments, planning, better resource allocation, and contribute to social and economic security. Geospatial and household data are documented and used to secure government-issued land rights (DUATs).  With a land document in hand, farmers can now securely access a range of goods and services. Community mapping and visioning exercises ensure that all voices, including women’s, are consulted throughout the process, and that women’s names are on the ownership documents. These data are useful for local planning, resource mobilization and allocation, and understanding how land is used, both by communities and for investments. This reduces corruption and conflict and improves the enabling environment for investment.

Conservation Farming and Climate-smart Practices: Technologies such as solar drip irrigation systems, spaced planting, use of ground cover, early land preparation, and improved inputs, are proven to drastically increase crop yields, improve soil quality, require fewer inputs, and conserve valuable crop residues and water. Higher yields and more frequent crop cycles allow farmers to consume and sell their production in local markets. Mitigation efforts, such as mulching, drainage, basins, soil restoration, and other activities reduce damage during severe weather events. Increased incomes from improved production provides a cushion for post-disaster resilience. Micronutrient-rich crops will be prioritized to address nutritional deficits in Dombe and the region. The increase in yields will allow the population to access nutritional foods more readily. 

Women’s Empowerment: Advancing women and their rights is the fuel for the food system engine. Farmers who train other farmers (also called lead farmers) —over 60% of whom are women—are empowered to make decisions on crops, consumption, and investments. They serve as local land data collectors and ensure women’s names are included on DUATs to protect their ownership and inheritance rights. Youth and women play a key role in mapping land and analyzing data to engage their talents and build digital literacy skills.

High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.

Dombe, Mozambique will have a strong, nourishing, and sustainable food system transformed by an integrated focus on land rights, climate-smart agriculture, and women’s empowerment. Dombe’s population will feel confident about their futures, with policies and local practices that ensure that land tenure is secured and that women have equal share in land ownership and land use decisions. The economy will be rejuvenated, with women and youth trained as local entrepreneurs and service providers, including as community mappers, using technology for data collection. Private sector actors, such as cooperative enterprises, will invest in the food system where there is now clarity and transparency around land ownership, and clear data exists for planning by local governments and investors.

Farmers will invest in the health of their land and natural resources through conservation agriculture practices and appropriate technologies. They will have improved soil and water health, increased yields, better nutritional outcomes, and more resilience against environmental and market shocks. Food markets in Dombe will be thriving, with Dombe households consuming, buying, and selling nutritious, affordable foods that improve health and educational outcomes. There will be increased demand for these foods through women’s peer nutrition education circles, cooking demonstrations, and community celebrations where these foods are a part of cultural practices. The farmers of Dombe will have created a virtuous food system that has far-reaching positive economic and social impacts on livelihoods, well-being, the environment, and resilience, making Dombe a vibrant economic hub and scalable model for prosperity in Mozambique and throughout Africa. 

Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?

By 2050, a sustainable, nourishing food system will be achieved by the people of Dombe, Mozambique through an integrated approach combining three transformational drivers of change: land tenure rights, climate-smart agriculture, and women’s empowerment. With these three components, the vision links physical assets (land), with technical assets (farming practices and tools), and human assets (women’s skills and ideas).

Cadasta Foundation, a nonprofit organization that uses the Cadasta Platform—a suite of innovative digital technologies and services to advance land and resources rights around the world—has partnered with NCBA CLUSA in Mozambique, a nonprofit organization focused on building resilient food systems through nutrition-sensitive and climate smart agriculture and community-led training and services. Together, we bring innovative approaches that will empower and enable the people of Dombe to create their own sustainable, nourishing food system and future.

Cadasta’s vision is to build a world where even the most marginalized individuals and communities can benefit from the opportunities afforded by secure land and resource rights, and all of the benefits that flow from them-most notably, food security. Our partnership with NCBA CLUSA, a leader in conservation farming and community-led resilience, will deliver key technical services so that the farmers and community members of Dombe realize their own vision.

Interconnected Approach: Our approach includes all six interconnected Food System Vision Prize themes—economics, environment, diets, technology, culture, and policy (see attached graphic). Secure land rights based on data informed by the Cadasta Platform technology, will result in cultural adoption of women’s rights to land, as well as increased uptake of climate-smart agricultural policies. This in turn will preserve and protect the environment and increase nutritious crop yields that in turn support better diets and increase prosperous economic activity. Securing land rights and tenure benefits businesses and creates long-term economic and social prosperity and opportunities, allowing communities to access goods and services and businesses to expand their markets and addressing the challenge of dwindling and inconsistent agricultural yield, as well as climate change vulnerability, head-on.

Our team’s existing work in Dombe will be grounded in local government and community leader support, which we will leverage to ensure community participation. We will work with the Fazenda de Esperança de Dombe as a central training site and product aggregation base. Our activities will include:

-Training on data collection processes and procedures, including community sensitization about women being involved in data collection and listed as head of households or co-head of households.

-Training community facilitators to in turn train community mappers, many of them women and youth, to demarcate boundaries and record community-held land use and resources.

-Data analysis education to allow for informed decisions about land-based investments and priority actions that support food.

-Use of land data to secure information needed for DUATs from the Mozambican government.

-Farmer training on climate-smart agriculture, including identification of “lead farmers” who will train other farmers.

-Training concerning nutrition, including mother-to-mother groups, women’s peer nutrition education circles, cooking demonstrations, and community celebrations.

-Adoption and ongoing implementation of climate-smart sustainable agricultural practices, including solar drip irrigation systems, spaced planting, use of ground cover, early land preparation, and improved seed and other inputs, are proven to drastically increase crop yields, improve soil quality, require fewer inputs, and conserve valuable crop residue and water.

-Natural hazard adaptability and mitigation efforts, including mulching, drainage, basins, soil restoration, and other activities reduce the damage during severe weather events.

The future state of the Dombe food system will see significantly enhanced prosperity, as more diverse crops, and enhanced climate resilience, result in increasing crop yields.

Land Rights: In most countries, land accounts for between half and three-quarters of national wealth. In Mozambique, that number is estimated at approximately 80 percent. Land tenure enables, cultivates, and protects resources; since land is a valuable physical asset in addition to a critical agricultural input, a land title provides collateral for financial inclusion and increases the economic value of the household. Land titles promote the security and confidence of ownership, particularly for women, that enable positive behaviors like investments, planning, better resource allocation, and livelihood generation.

In Dombe, the majority of people do not hold legally registered title to their land. Evidence shows that secure land rights are important for reducing poverty and boosting shared prosperity at the country, community, and family levels. In our 2050 vision, Dombe’s population will feel confident about their futures, with policies and local practices that ensure that land tenure is secured and that women have equal share in land ownership and land use decisions.

Cadasta will use appropriate technologies to train Dombe community mappers, many of whom are women and youth, to map land and collect data, identifying how land is currently used, and who is using it. High-accuracy geospatial data, smartphones, tablets, antennas, and survey tools help speed up data collection for a fraction of the time and cost of traditional surveying. A secure platform allows data to be stored, managed, visualized, and analyzed to improve decision-making and advance tenure efforts. In doing so, we will build and transfer land and technology knowledge and skills.

The collected data will be used to secure DUATs. With a land document in hand, farmers can now securely access a range of goods and services. Land and household data are also useful for local planning, resource mobilization and allocation, and understanding how land is used, both by communities and for investments. This reduces conflict and improves the enabling environment for investment, rejuvenating the environment. Private sector actors will invest in the food system, where there is now clarity around land ownership, improved transparency, decreased corruption, and where clear data exist for planning by local governments and investors. Community mapping and visioning exercises ensure that all voices, including women’s, are consulted throughout the process, and that women’s names are on the ownership documents.

Conservation Farming and Climate-smart Practices: Agriculture accounts for around 25 percent of Mozambique’s GDP; the agricultural sector still consists primarily of smallholders farming limited amounts of land under rain-fed cultivation. Farmers in Dombe will invest in the health of their land and natural resources through conservation agriculture practices and appropriate technologies they learn from NCBA CLUSA’s team. They will have improved soil and water health, increased yields, better nutritional outcomes, and more resilience against environmental and market shocks. This includes a package of training, inputs, and interventions to build capacity for the adoption and scaling of environmentally friendly practices that have economic benefits too.

Technologies such as solar drip irrigation systems, spaced planting, use of ground cover, early land preparation, and improved seed and other inputs, are proven to drastically increase crop yields, improve soil quality, require fewer inputs, and conserve valuable crop residue and water. Higher yields and more frequent crop cycles allow farmers to consume and sell their production in local markets. Mitigation efforts, such as mulching, drainage, basins, soil restoration, and other activities reduce the damage during severe weather events. Increased incomes from improved production provides a cushion for post-disaster resilience. Micronutrient-rich crops crops are prioritized to address nutritional deficits in Dombe and the region.

Women’s Empowerment: Advancing women and their rights is the human capital fuel for the food system engine. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has found that if women farmers had equal access to resources (which include education, credit, education, and extension services) food production would increase 20 to 30 percent. In the Dombe context, women farmers being able to hold land could lift thousands out of hunger and poverty.

Women farmers will be empowered to make decisions on crops, consumption, and investments. They serve as local land data collectors and ensure women’s names are included on land DUATs to protect their ownership and inheritance rights. Youth and women play a key role in mapping to engage their talents and build digital literacy skills. Food markets in Dombe will be thriving, with Dombe households consuming, buying, and selling nutritious, affordable foods that improve health and educational outcomes.

There will be increased demand for these foods through women’s peer nutrition education circles, cooking demonstrations, and community celebrations where these foods are a part of cultural practices and diets. Women will be able to use our technology to have data about how their land is used and what rights they have to it. Women will have more economic power within the community, and will be able to have greater say in how existing and new proposed policies in Dombe affect the environment and themselves.

In our vision, the farmers of Dombe will have created a virtuous food system that has far-reaching positive economic and social impacts on livelihoods, well-being, the environment, and resilience, making Dombe a vibrant economic hub and scalable model for prosperity in Mozambique and throughout Africa.

How did you hear about the Food System Vision Prize?

  • Conference/event

Describe how your Vision developed over the course of the Refinement Phase.

Our Vision evolved through deeper engagement with Dombe residents. Envisioning the future is not intuitive for people whose primary concern is meeting basic needs. Daily demands and cultural, religious, and social norms do not often provide space to engage in these conversations. Our team worked to create more of these spaces, allowing people to tap into their aspirations for their children and to imagine more clearly how changes made today would affect them tomorrow. We incorporated responses to newly identified signals, like worries about the impacts of climate change, fear of displacement, questions about how new farming practices would impact costs, and women’s perceived limitations on how to influence dietary changes and spending at home. If land, climate-smart agriculture (CSA), and women’s empowerment form the engine of the food system, what provides the fuel? We added more on enabling policies, local governance, and private sector development to enable the engine to run.

Please provide the names of all organizations you meaningfully partnered with to develop this latest version of your Vision (they contributed at least 10 hours of time to the Vision development during the Refinement Phase).

Our core partners include NCBA CLUSA’s team leading the Promotion of Conservation Agriculture (PROMAC) program; the Fazenda de Esperança in Dombe; and community members, both from the current PROMAC program in Sussundenga and the future one in Dombe. Until COVID restrictions, CLUSA field agents spent significant time capturing learning from farmers and talking with people about the vision. Staff captured the learning and aspirations of current PROMAC farmers through interviews and a video that highlight how CSA practices, land rights, and women’s empowerment have transformed their lives and built the foundation of a robust and nourishing food system. These takeaways were discussed with members of the Dombe community, including representatives from farmer associations, women’s groups, youth clubs, and private sector entrepreneurs. Officials from local government and agriculture were consulted to ensure that the Vision aligns with development plans and resources.

Describe the specific steps you took during the Refinement phase to include different stakeholders to develop your Vision, including a description (age, profile, and total number) of the stakeholders engaged, and how you engaged with each.

Dialogues and Consultations. These have been having ongoing conversations with Dombe community members since the beginning of the PROMAC work, and Food System Vision Prize-specific dialogues have taken place for the past six months. These discussions included key community stakeholders, including local chiefs. The Fazenda played a major role, due to its historical presence, trust among stakeholders, local knowledge, and ability to provide analysis of challenges and needs. 

Day in the Life Video. Filmed by NCBA CLUSA, the video served as a tool to deepen the engagement with Dombe stakeholders around how conservation agriculture, land titles, and women’s empowerment drive a sustainable food system. 

Futurecasting. Important to note is how stakeholders were engaged. Futurecasting is not common practice, so field facilitators elicited dialogue with guiding questions: What will you do with the extra income and why? If women understand which foods and nutrients are more healthy, what foods will they grow, buy, and prepare? If the government gives you a land right, will you expand/change your crops, adopt CSA, or access a loan? Should women be more involved in household decisions, and why? How do we use our community assets to grow and sell more production, be healthier, and protect against disasters? Through their responses, community members started to paint a picture of what could be different and how today’s actions will influence the future. The outlines of the vision came into focus on how the three drivers of a nourishing food system—land, climate-smart agriculture, and women’s empowerment—fit together, address pressing needs over time, and transform the future. Community gatherings included youth, women, and men. Smaller meetings were also held with farmers and their families and with service providers. 20 people aged 18 to 68 were consulted through three in-person gatherings prior to the onset of COVID restrictions on travel and gatherings.

What signals and trends did you draw from to inform your Vision? Please provide data or examples that back up each signal or trend.

Land

Local. Since Cyclone Idai in 2019, residents want secure land tenure to ensure food security and invest in mitigation measures against future storms.Despite increased pressure on youth to migrate to urban areas, land is still viewed as a critical  asset for economic prosperity and food security. However, local practices limit women’s access to land, hindering their economic options, food security, and ability to implement climate mitigation measures.

National. The government has signaled its priority for land titling under an imminent World Bank-funded program, intending to issue two million DUATs and 1,500 community certificates. Despite the 1997 Land Law that recognized women as co-title holders of community-held land, rural women are rarely able to exercise these rights. Recently, the government has indicated willingness to clarify inheritance rights.

CSA

Local. Cyclone Idai heightened residents’ urgency to mitigate soil and crop loss and ensure food security. Farmers expressed the need for more CSA training, which PROMAC has demonstrated drives improved production. The private sector and local entrepreneurs see its value and benefits.  As a result, they are willing to invest more into improved seed, fertilizer, mulching, irrigation, and financial services.

National. Mozambique is dependent on imported food; in 2015, the National Platform for Conservation Agriculture was created to boost CSA research and practices. Adoption of CSA is hindered by low access to knowledge and technology, high investment costs, and limited access to credit and insurance. Nevertheless, as farmers reap benefits of PROMAC and we reduce barriers, they are gradually adopting low-input and cost-effective CSA measures. Moreover, there are opportunities to engage the private sector in policy, input supply, value addition, microfinance, insurance, and technology to accelerate adoption.

Women’s Empowerment

Local. More women are training others on CSA and feeding practices, earning income, and making decisions. Traditional leaders are increasingly more receptive to women taking on leadership roles in agriculture and the inclusion of women’s names on land registrations, but more needs to be done to remove barriers.

National. Food insecurity is increasing in rural areas, where families—which on average include six children—often eat only one meal a day. Despite women being primary food producers, men typically control production and income. This is due to the fact that women continue to have their land rights restricted by customary practices, even though there have been advances in the law around gender-equitable land and resources rights. Food insecurity is compounded by limited efforts to address population growth. However, in  2019, the Law on Prevention of Premature Unions was passed, criminalizing underage marriage.

Describe a “Day in the Life” of a key food system actor within your food system in 2050 (e.g., farmer, chef, supply chain actor, food policy actor, etc.).

Graça rises early each morning to start making breakfast. She makes sure that she has fresh fruits to add to the traditional boiled cassava and cup of black tea. As a lead farmer, she knows that these foods provide healthy nutrients for her. She has shared her knowledge about a balanced diet with other women in the village, as well as what she has learned about healthy practices, like boiling water, washing hands, and using toilets to decrease illness. 

Today is market day, and Graça is confident that her sweet potatoes, melon, carrots, and beans will sell well. Ten years ago, she received a DUAT for her farm through the Cadasta Platform, making her feel protected about investing in her land. She started planting using CSA techniques learned via the PROMAC program. Before planting season, she decides which crops she wants to grow for her family and which she will sell. She uses a mobile phone to look up prices on e-Extensao and talks to her agrodealer about what foods will grow and sell well this coming season. She secures a small mobile money loan to buy seeds sold by a reputable dealer.

When the market opens, Graça greets her customers, confidently informing them that the sweet potatoes are high in vitamin A and calcium. Her customers ask about yields given the recent drought, and she tells them about how the planting basins, drip irrigation, better seeds, and ground cover have allowed her crops to thrive. She shares that even though her home was damaged in last year’s cyclone, she was able to use her savings to quickly recover and rebuild, even after paying school fees. Graça trains other women farmers and emphasizes her keys to success: secure land tenure, CSA, and her own empowerment, knowing that she is contributing to a more secure and nourishing food system for her community.

Our video features Rosa Chimoio, a lead farmer under the existing PROMAC implementation. Our Vision builds on Rosa’s experiences to lay the groundwork for Graça’s life in 2050. 

Environment | How will your food system of 2050 adapt to climate change and remain resilient?

In 2050, farmers and other system actors in Dombe are confident in their ability to take action against climate change. They will have been farming for decades using CSA, including spacing, ground cover, mulching, soil conservation. This has resulted in improved inputs that decrease the need for pesticides and water. Healthy soils are rich and moist and during dry spells, and basins, water and fog harvesting, and storage are widely used. Local irrigation entrepreneurs have also developed affordable drip irrigation systems that farmers use during dry spells. Livestock runoff is managed to limit contamination and maximize manure use. 

Due to increased production and sales of nutritious food crops, farm families in the food system invest more in conservation efforts. With improved and steady income streams, parents can send their children to school where they learn essential skills for their future and how to take care of nature. Some farmers have developed carbon sequestration methods in the surrounding forests, built thriving agroforestry businesses, while others have started producing and selling organics to specialty markets. Dombe is connected to the Rede para Gestão Comunitária de Recursos Naturais, R-GCRN—a network formed in 2020 of rural communities working to improve the management of natural resources and benefits sharing. R-GCRN has established effective Community-Based Information Management systems that improve access to information, decision-making, and economic development through inclusive partnerships with the private sector, government, and civil society. Dombe uses R-GCRN’s community governance package to plan and deliver services on:

-Rights: communal or individual land and property rights

-Governance systems: to improve participation and inclusion in community decision making

-Land use planning: supports and empowers rural communities to make a better decision for today and future allocation of land for development and conservation

Local governance councils map community resources and assets using the Cadasta Platform to better manage and monitor community natural resources in the surrounding mountains and forests, savannahs, and Dombe’s wetlands. Using these data, they develop and monitor natural resource management (NRM) plans to align local investments with a vision for shared resources and control of illegal deforestation and mining. The local councils use these plans to negotiate equitable access terms around government-approved timber concessions and engage with private firms to raise concerns and fair access to related livelihoods. Community-appointed environment officers are trained to monitor a range of environmental impacts and work with local youth and civil society groups on recycling, water conservation, pesticide control, and a range of other issues. 

To build resilience and mitigate against the shocks and stresses of natural disasters, the Dombe local government has also formed community disaster committees made up of local natural emergency management officials and community members. The committees at the village level connect to district bodies and ensure that NRM and economic development plans build in disaster mitigation activities and budgets. Annual disaster management plans, training, and drills are conducted regularly and residents know what to do before, during, and after cyclones to protect lives and properties. Teams train community members to monitor and record rainfall using simple rain gauges, with warning system protocols for evacuating people and animals to higher ground during severe flooding.  Small scale infrastructure, such as riverbank reinforcement, gutters, reinforced bridges, and drainage systems have been built to provide extra protection.

Dombe residents share their model for responsible land use as part of a nourishing, sustainable food system with surrounding communities in Manica province and other parts of Mozambique. These areas adopt similar practices, increasing regional production of both commodities and diversified crops for local markets. Market infrastructure has been built to accommodate growth in output, but also to model best environmental practices.  Local farmers, farmer associations, elected officials, government officers, and others participate regularly in learning exchanges, national conservation agriculture events, and have shared their experiences as far as Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, and Zimbabwe at regional Southern Africa meetings on NRM, CSA, and food systems.

Diets | How will your food system of 2050 address malnutrition in all its forms (undernutrition, micronutrient deficiency, metabolic disease) for the people living there?

In 2020, Mozambique had extremely high levels of chronic malnutrition (43%) affecting almost half of children under the age of five. This contributed to infant deaths, poor child health, and detrimental impacts on school performance, household income, and inter-generational cycles of deprivation. Over half of Mozambique’s families were food insecure; 81% of the population relied on agriculture and over 95% of food crops were produced under rain-fed conditions in a country that suffers frequent drought and floods. 

According to the 2019 Global Nutrition Report, Mozambique was not on target to meet global nutrition goals. The national prevalence of under-five stunting—which means the child is too short for his or her age—was 43%, which was the ninth highest rate in Africa and significantly greater than the developing country average of 25%. Under-five wasting—or a rapid deterioration in nutritional status over a short period of time—was 6.1%. Yet, with the influx of processed and sugary foods, Mozambique also experienced an increase in child obesity, from 3.6% in 2008 to 7.8% in 2020.

A significant cause of stunting is the lack of appropriate infant and young child feeding practices. Less than half of children (41%) under six months were exclusively breastfed, well below the Eastern Africa average of 58.5%.  Only 13% of children aged 6–23 months received the minimum recommended diet. Another major factor is diarrhea, one of the leading causes of child death, the result of poor sanitation and hygiene practices.

The diets in Dombe in 2020, as in most of Mozambique, were 80% cereals and starches (mostly maize) resulting in  extremely low micronutrient intake. Diets were high in sugar-based beverages and salt and low in protein, calcium, omega 3s, and critical vitamins. Extremely low levels of Vitamin A, iodine, and iron consumption were a severe public health issue. Low levels of education contributed to limited knowledge of optimal nutrition practices. Nutrition education was not widespread, reaching just 18% of children in schools. 

Our 2050 Food System Vision has turned around the nutritional status of Dombe, Manica Province, and surrounding provinces, leading to national level improvements. This is due to a number of transformational policies, actions, and behaviors over three decades:

-Food security and nutrition plans created by local government and community members prioritize better nutrition and food security for the region, preparing them against shocks and stresses, including epidemics and pandemics. This plan has channeled resources into monitoring nutrition levels, supporting nutrition education, building local food storage facilities, constructing toilets and hand-washing stations, implementing Open Defecation elimination campaigns, and linking to district and national actors for support.

-Widespread nutrition education campaigns create demand for nutritious foods and healthy practices. Nutrition practices are taught in schools, women’s groups, and through civil society, including messages, school and community gardens, cooking demos, local recipe contests, and a range of activities.

-Mother-to-mother groups are led by women in homes to promote breastfeeding, birth spacing, and other healthy feeding and sanitation practices.

-Nutrition-led agriculture is integrated into CSA, with production based on addressing nutritional deficiencies in Dombe and surrounding areas. Nutrient-rich crops and fruit trees provide Vitamin A, Vitamin C, protein, iron, and other critical nutrients.

-Farmers have bio-fortified seed options and have learned to graft more nutritious varieties onto local ones. 

-Local women nutrition agents produce and sell nutritional products such as water filters, iodine tabs, moringa powder, baobab products, and others.

-Food loss and waste are addressed in the food system through innovative post-harvest technologies, storage systems, and other approaches.

-Women are prioritized in programs to build assets and resilience through small ruminants, poultry, and livestock production, among other opportunities.

-Women’s land issues are effectively managed, ensuring women’s inheritance and protection of rights for unmarried women, multiple wives, and daughters.

-A robust local private sector is created through a network of entrepreneurial agents to provide products, services and knowledge to the last mile and link to medium and large private sector firms. Community-based agents are paid to provide inputs, irrigation, transportation, storage, aggregation, financial services, and market linkages. 

The whole food system is built to be nutrition-sensitive, starting with improved seeds for higher nutrition-content varieties, conservation farming training and support, training of input suppliers, on-farm service providers, cooperatives, financial services, and buyers around the economic and health benefits of the system. 

Economics | Where and what will the jobs be that support living wages in your future food system of 2050, and how will these jobs impact gender equality?

Dynamic Local Private Sector. Our food system prioritizes the creation of a dynamic local private sector. This includes entrepreneurs who work as “last-mile” agents bringing their own or others’ products and services to farmers and local markets. It also includes local and regional small and medium-sized firms. Larger national and multinational firms play a role and often link to the local private sector actors listed below:

Community-based Service Providers (CBSPs). CBSPs provide both on-and off-farm services. Some agents are hired by local firms as field agents representing their products and services. This hyper-local private sector serves as a “last mile” link between farmers and local and national firms operating in the area. These roles are available to men and women, and in some cases, are well suited to youth. Women lead farmers often transition into these roles due to their specialized training and experience. Existing entrepreneurs are trained in basic business skills, inventory management, customer service, and linked to larger hubs of agrodealers and firms that aggregate and distribute inventory and demand.

Individual CBSPs represent a range of products and services, such as:

-Seed and input agents (including proper planting and usage techniques)

-Fertilizer and pesticide agents (includes training on proper usage, and/or spraying services)

-Irrigation service providers who assess needs and install the most appropriate systems

-Transportation providers to move product from the field to warehouses, aggregators, and buyers/markets

-Conservation farming trainers and technical assistance providers

-Nutrition agents for nutrition and health products and training on healthy feeding practices. 

-Health and hygiene products and training, such as tippy taps, local soap production, water purification systems, and other items for daily hygiene but also pandemic mitigation and response

-Data collectors and mappers for land services using the Cadasta Platform

-Financial agents to support credit applications to financial institutions

Small Local Firms. These provide products and services such as:

-Soy and maize production for animal feed

-Mulch and manure production

-Egg and poultry production

-Irrigation systems

-Plowing/tilling services

-Solar and renewable energy

-Outgrower schemes

Medium and Large Local and Regional Firms. These link to producer cooperatives (and often use local CBSP agents) to engage in activities such as:

-Improved seed production and distribution

-Fertilizer production and distribution

-Millers (grain and flour processing)

-Processing facilities (cleaning, sorting, pressing, packaging, etc.)

-Water and energy systems

-Outgrower schemes for a range of production

National/International Firms. Firms with a national presence and access to global markets often provide the following, and link to commodity associations, cooperatives, smaller firms and/or agents who act as sales and distribution representatives:

-Agricultural inputs and equipment

-Commodity traders and exporters

-Consumer goods and foodstuffs

-Processors/value-addition

-Access to credit/pre-financing

Culture | How will your 2050 food system ensure that the cultural, spiritual and community traditions and/or practices in your Place flourish?

There are many beautiful cultural practices in Mozambique that celebrate art, music, community, family, and religious traditions. The cultures and traditions of Islam, Swahili, and Bantu speakers co-exist harmoniously in the country with Portuguese, European, and Indian cultures. Ethnic groups include Shangaan, Chokwe, Manyoka, Sena, and Makua. Despite the rich variety of languages, beliefs, and traditions, Mozambicans share a common love for song, poetry, dance, and performance. They also share wonderful food traditions with regional differences and practices. 

Because we have secured the buy-in of local traditional leaders, the “regulos” and queens, the community is receptive to our approach. Our food system celebrates cultural expressions of food and nourishes traditions that make food the centerpiece of family and community gatherings. Local staff, who understand the various nutritional traditions, gauge the nutritional value of current diets and recommend adjustments that are appealing to the local palate and respect their food traditions. As a result, special foods for holidays and religious observation are cherished and promoted as part of a healthy diet. 

Cultural practices around nutrition, feeding practices, reproduction, sanitation and hygiene are explored and discussed with families. Local change agents, especially women leaders, lead the integration of best practices into family diets and habits even while honoring loved traditions. Families continue to preserve the role of food as cultural, spiritual, and physical nourishment. 

Our food system also addresses and reframes practices that do not promote the conditions for creating a regenerative, nourishing food system. These are the practices and norms that exclude women and other groups; favor power brokers; disregard implementation of land ownership and inheritance laws; and disadvantage certain community members due to discrimination based on gender, disability, political status, income, race, ethnic group, and other identifiers.

Some of the practices that local leaders have addressed include the land and property ownership status of multiple and common law wives, especially in the case of the husband’s death. Which wife and/or family members’ names go on the land title are decided by families who have learned about the implications of their decisions. Leaders understand the gender implications of the land laws and consider equity and fairness when disputes arise. 

Technology | What technological advances are needed to transform your food system into one that meets your goals and embodies the values of your Vision in 2050?

There are technology advances that are important to each of the three areas: land tenure; CSA; and women’s empowerment that have transformed our food system.

Land Technologies. One of the biggest advancements is the ease, speed, and accuracy of mapping land parcels and documenting the land-holder’s household information using Cadasta’s Platform. Before Cadasta, the PROMAC project relied on government surveyors using more traditional methodologies such as paper-based farmer data collection and traditional survey equipment, although they also used GPS units purchased by the project and given to the land office. The documentation required for DUATs had 14 time-consuming steps that required many visits to various offices for review and approvals. The process took months, if not years, for the DUAT to be issued. Due to the small number of surveyors, it was difficult to schedule the demarcation process, and it took months of advance scheduling. In addition, the project needed to pay transportation, fuel, and per diem costs to even get the surveyor out to the field, for a total per-DUAT cost of $400 USD. With Cadasta’s Platform, not only does it take a fraction of the time, the community itself is involved and trained in the process through local data collectors. A service provider for land takes the data and maps collected on Cadasta’s Platform to the government for processing where DUATs are issued in approximately eight weeks at a cost of $35 each. In addition, with Cadasta’s Platform, the digital data, collected on- and off-line is visualized, analyzed, and shared with the local partners and community members and integrated seamlessly into government land information systems. The use of Cadasta’s Platform has transformed the ability of communities and the government to scale up land titling to establish and improve sustainable food systems across Mozambique. Cadasta’s Platform can be paired with other information systems and drone imagery to provide a better picture of farmers’ access to crops, agronomic needs, and their ability to apply more targeted agricultural inputs to increase yields and reduce climate risk. 

CSA. Similarly, recent technological advancements in CSA have improved livelihoods and strengthened food systems. Technologies such as solar drip irrigation systems, spaced planting, paired with agricultural practices that use ground cover and early land preparation are shown to drastically reduce labor, increase crop yields, improve soil quality, and require fewer inputs to conserve valuable crop residues and water. By reducing labor and increasing yields, farmers can consume and sell their production in local markets. Mitigation efforts, such as mulching, drainage, basins, soil restoration, and other activities make their crops more resilient and reduce damage during severe weather events. Increased incomes from improved production provides a cushion for post-disaster resilience. Micronutrient-rich crops will be prioritized to address nutritional deficits in Dombe and the region. The increases in yields will allow the population to access nutritional foods more readily. 

Women’s Empowerment. Advancing women and their rights is the fuel for the food system engine. Farmers who train other farmers in CSA (also called lead farmers)—over 60% of whom are women—are empowered to make decisions on crops, consumption, and investments. Using Cadasta’s Platform and tools, and armed with phones, women also serve as local land data collectors and can better ensure that women’s names are included on DUATs to protect their ownership and inheritance rights. Trained by Cadasta, youth and women will play a key role in mapping land and analyzing data to engage their talents and build digital literacy skills. 

Policy | What types of policies are needed to enable your future food system?

Overall, government policies need to favor producers, consumers, women, and vulnerable populations, while lowering barriers to productive investments in the private sector. Social protection mechanisms, such as healthcare access, cash transfers, social security, and others are key to covering basic needs where social safety nets are weak. Trade and market-oriented policies, such as reduced tariffs, regional integration, and stable monetary policies are all important, while recognizing the need to protect and elevate smallholder production in the face of national policies that favor large agricultural concerns. 

Broader climate-change adaptation and environmental protection policies and regulations will be critical to protecting land and resources and supporting long-term sustainable land use. Disaster risk mitigation policies and coordination and response mechanisms must be in place at all jurisdiction levels to sustain a healthy food system that is at risk of pandemics, cyclones, floods, droughts and other catastrophes.

Women’s Land Rights. Despite the 1997 Land Law that recognized women as co-title holders of community-held land, rural women are rarely able to exercise these rights. There is  no legal recognition of inheritance rights of women in polygamous or common-law relationships. However, the government of Mozambique indicated in 2019 a willingness to clarify inheritance rights, such as revisions to the Land Law to encompass equal inheritance rights and clarity concerning names on DUATs in cases of polygamy.

CSA Policies and Investments. The government needs to take a landscape approach to adaptation, mitigation, and productivity by creating policy and program initiatives that promote a number of investments and incentives for climate-smart seed production; irrigation schemes; consistent smart-subsidies for converting to climate-smart production; integration of disaster mitigation planning and implementation; and other efforts. 

Private Sector. The government needs to engage private sector organizations in CSA policy dialogue, input supply (including equipment manufacture and repair), value addition, microfinance, agricultural climate risk insurance, and climate-smart technology development that will allow for scaling of CSA systems. This includes strengthening the implementation of existing cooperative laws that favor farmer associations and member-owned businesses. It also includes targeted support of local private sector entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized enterprises in the form of favorable financing, access to training programs, and other innovative approaches to incentivize growth in this sector. Finance policies that reduce regulatory barriers and provide guarantees for cooperative banks, microfinance institutes, and commercial banks to offer affordable, flexible products to smallholders and businesses along the value chains are critical. Market development, farm-to-market roads, reduced barriers to starting and doing business, and other enabling environment policies and investments are necessary to stimulate this sector.

Nutrition Education and Women’s Empowerment. High-level policies, along with major investments in social messaging around nutrition are needed to stimulate demand for nutritious foods and the production and market systems around them. Small, dispersed efforts in certain areas will not be enough. Combating malnutrition through improved feeding practices, early state-supported education of children and mothers, and engagement of civil society, government, and the private sector through mass awareness-raising will tip the balance among rural, peri-urban, and urban populations toward needed behavior change. Women’s and girls’ inclusion, education, training, and business investments to spur leadership and inclusive decision-making should also be addressed at the policy level through a systematic review and updating of laws, regulations, and practices that discriminate against women and dampen their active participation in a vibrant food system. 

Describe how these 6 Themes connect with and influence one another in your food system.

All of the Food System Vision Prize themes (see attached systems map) are connected and influence each other. 

Land Rights. A land title provides collateral for financial inclusion and increases the economic value of the household. Land titles promote the security and confidence of ownership, particularly for women, that enable positive economic decision-making like investments, planning, better resource allocation, and livelihood generation. In Dombe, the majority of people do not hold legally registered titles to their land. In our 2050 Vision, Dombe’s population will feel confident about their futures, with policies and local practices that ensure that land tenure is secured and that women have equal share in land ownership and use decisions.

CSA. Farmers will invest in the health of their land and natural resources through conservation agriculture practices and appropriate technologies they learn from NCBA CLUSA’s team. They will have improved soil and water health, increased yields, better nutritional outcomes, and more resilience against environmental and market shocks. This includes a package of training, inputs, and interventions to build capacity for the adoption and scaling of environmentally-friendly practices that have economic benefits too.

Women’s Empowerment. Women farmers holding land could lift thousands out of hunger and poverty. In our vision, women farmers will be empowered to make decisions about land use, including crops, consumption and diets, and investments. They serve as local land data collectors and ensure women’s names are included on land DUATs to protect their ownership and inheritance rights. Youth and women play a key role in mapping to engage their talents and build digital literacy skills. Food markets will thrive, with households consuming, buying, and selling nutritious, affordable foods that improve health and educational outcomes.

Connections and Influences. Collecting digital geospatial and farmer data to secure land rights decreases investment risks by farmers and businesses and enhances environmental and disaster risk reduction behaviors. As farmer investments in CSA increase, improved land use will facilitate higher yields (economic), soil and water health (environment), and access to and consumption of healthy foods (diet). Addressing policy and cultural barriers to  women’s rights to land impacts incomes (economic), social practice (culture), and women’s decision-making on the farm and in the household (economics and diets). Employing technologies (technology) to document and map land for titles, deliver market information systems, such as e-Extensao, implementing water harvesting systems, and decrease post-harvest food loss, for example, will increase uptake of CSA practices, lower costs, save labor, and increase profitability. Improved seed and pesticide technologies will  increase nutritious crop yields that support better diets and increase productivity and profitability.  

Describe any trade-offs you may have to make within your system to attain your Vision by 2050.

To successfully implement activities to achieve our Vision, the Cadasta team recognizes that we will have to make trade-offs. Below we have listed three major trade-offs anticipated in each of our food system drivers

Land Rights. The process of collecting data needed to issue DUATs can be done efficiently and effectively through the Cadasta Platform. The Platform has been configured to collect data specific to the Mozambique Land Law, and already has data for nearly 3,000 people, the majority of whom are women. Even with a faster, more transparent process, addressing land takes time and can be fraught with conflict and corruption. It can bring family and gender conflicts to the surface and force clarity where opacity has benefited certain parties. Although it may be easier in the short term to leave land ownership and use aside, in the long term, food systems will not be stable and sustainable without clear and gender-equitable ownership and use rights.

CSA. Although adopting climate-smart agriculture has both short- and long-term benefits, the process  takes time and requires shifts in culture and practice. Farmers are not quick to adopt so they will likely  phase it in, using a partial crop adoption approach. Ensuring that farmers are adopting technology and willing to maintain its use is alsoe a learning process, using on-farm coaching, community meetings, and field days, that take place alongside traditional agriculture processes so that farmers are assured that they will not miss a crop cycle or income opportunity. Though not a fast or efficient transition to CSA, the trade-off is that farmers experience the benefits for themselves, become advocates with other farmers, and steadily and sustainably increase CSA adoption and other important skills and behaviors. 

Women’s Empowerment. Pushing this in certain contexts can be socially disruptive and cause backlash if not done in a culturally sensitive way. Women themselves often participate in gender discriminatory behaviors and are not always change agents. The trade-off is that it becomes necessary to enlisting those same patriarchal leaders and systems to effect change. With lower levels of women’s digital and overall literacy, the use of technology for mapping, market information, and other areas takes more time for training and adoption. These trade-offs are necessary to achieve long-term women’s empowerment, which is critical to achieving and sustaining the Vision.  

3 Years | Describe 3 key milestones that you would need to achieve within the next three years for your Vision to be on track?

Cadasta will prioritize achieving the following three key milestones to ensure a strong foundation for the continued implementation of Vision activities:

Reach Critical Mass on Systematic Formalization of Land Rights. As a foundation for a sustainable food system, we need to see significant progress on DUAT issuance. Within two years, all target households and farm plots will be documented  and submitted to the government. By year 3, we want 50% of the target population to have received their  DUATs, with 60% of the women having their names on the titles. In addition, communities understand their rights, have addressed major land conflicts, ensured women’s participation and inclusion of their names on the DUATs, and used the land data for household and  community planning. Community data has supported municipal planning, for example on land use, titling plans, and the creation of food security, nutrition, and resilience plans to help Dombe residents withstand shocks and stresses.

Achieve 50% adoption of CSA. By year three, we would want to see 50% of farmers in the target area adopting CSA, increasing diet diversity, responsible land use, and farmer literacy surrounding sustainable farming.  This number will continue to grow as will the collective hectares under CSA cultivation. New entrepreneurs, new value chain actors, and increased demand for nutritious foods will start to stimulate the markets for a sustainable food system.

Achieve Significant Women’s Empowerment through Land Rights, Leadership, and Decision-making. 60% of women in the target population are empowered by controlling agricultural use of their land, and/or  serving as lead farmers, training others, serving as data collectors, nutrition mentors, entrepreneurial service agents, or in other roles in which they improve access to land, finances, and decision-making. 

10 Years | What progress will you need to make—by 2030—that would set your Vision up to become a reality by 2050?

Governance. The municipal government has set up robust, participatory local governance structures to monitor gender-inclusive progress and accountability on land, food security, natural resources management, and disaster risk reduction components of local development plans, as well as systems for conflict dispute resolution. 

Markets. Local and regional markets are better structured and more efficient; infrastructure improvements have been made to mitigate contamination, hygiene, and safety concerns. Most farmers and vendors access market information on smartphones and have improved cooperation in transportation, aggregation, and trading to eliminate price-taking at the farmgate, retaining more profits and reinvesting them.    

Nutrition. Acute malnutrition is cut in half as Dombe experiences increased demand for and supply of nutritious crops. The average household has decreased levels of stunting and wasting among children 0-5, and improved birth and mother weights, dietary diversity, and Minimal Acceptable Diet thresholds.

Technology. At least 85% of farmers are using at least one technology tool, and at least 50% are using two or more technologies, to map and document land, increasing profits and efficiencies by increasing uptake of CSA, decreasing post-production food loss, enhancing market information access. 

CSA. At least 85% of farmers in Dombe and a growing number of farmers in surrounding areas are using CSA for at least half of their acreage. Their crops are diversified, and farmer associations have grown stronger to achieve efficiencies, exchanging learning and new technologies through regional and national CSA forums. 

Women’s Agency. Women lead farmers have their own associations to promote and support women’s roles in land ownership, farm production and services, nutrition promotion, and to advocate for better enforcement of laws to protect women’s rights and agency. More women participate in local governance and across the value chain.

If awarded the $200,000 prize what would you do with it?

Cadasta will invest most of the resources in Dombe, working with NCBA CLUSA and the Fazenda to replicate success from the PROMAC program. Starting with 50 lead farmers, half of them women, and five local data collectors, we will map and document the land rights for titles; set up demonstration plots; conduct training in CSA; and integrate women’s leadership in farming, nutrition, and market access. Planning and visioning sessions will address each of the six themes, engaging stakeholders around food security, nutrition, NRM planning, and how Dombe wants to prioritize steps to realize the Vision. We will then expand by seeking additional funds for Dombe to receive ongoing technical support and to replicate in surrounding areas. Part of the prize money will be used for learning exchanges with farmers and value chain actors already creating the vision in their communities.

We will develop a robust work plan and monitoring and evaluation framework to track metrics that build on local and national signals and trends and set benchmarks for success. It will draw on lessons learned and best practices derived from an existing World Bank's Africa Region Gender Innovation Lab (GIL) impact evaluation that is being conducted with NCBA CLUSA and Cadasta, and outline the best ways to improve women’s land tenure security, access to resources, decision-making, and livelihoods. 

We will create a communications campaign and toolkit to highlight the vision, its progress, and outcomes, featuring local voices of food system actors. We will promote and share it broadly through our respective national (Mozambican) and international channels. We will seek opportunities to share the vision with other communities, food system actors, organizations, local governments, and visionaries to learn from and replicate the Cadasta Food System Vision in ways that build on their unique talents, assets, and aspirations founded on land rights, climate-smart practices, and women’s empowerment.

If you are chosen as a Top Visionary, The Rockefeller Foundation would like to share your Vision widely with a global audience. What would you like the world to learn from your Vision for 2050?

A sustainable, nourishing food system is realized through three transformational drivers: land tenure, climate-smart agriculture (CSA), and women’s empowerment and leads to positive impacts on livelihoods, health and well-being, the environment, and resilience in Dombe, Mozambique and beyond.  

The secure right to land is the primary asset for agricultural production, giving producers and investors the confidence to invest in and steward land, resources, and businesses. Land tenure is no longer neglected as the foundation to a vibrant food system. 

Adoption of CSA is the asset that restores soil health, conserves water, limits chemicals, increases yields, and improves productivity and incomes. 

Women empowering themselves as decision-makers in agriculture, nutrition practices, and finances, bolsters family and community income, health, and nutrition outcomes.

Cadasta’s food system is supported by additional enabling factors:

National policies that enable equitable land access; producer-focused agricultural programs, markets and investments; and promote and enforce gender equality across sectors. 

Local governance and citizen participation that change consumption and hygiene practices; collect and manage land data; plan, implement, and monitor food security and nutrition, disaster risk, resilience, and natural resources. 

Private sector development of entrepreneurs and firms with access to finance, market information, new technologies, and public-private linkages. 

Please share a visual that communicates the structure and operation of your food system in 2050. Describe the visual.

The 2050 systems map attached shows how our Vision will foster a diverse, resilient, responsible, inclusive, connected, participatory food system. Our Vision is grounded in six themes, and influenced by five stakeholder groups. Each is loosely connected now, but by 2050 members will work more closely and in tandem. The themes are linked by components critical to system success, with three being primary and linked to all systems: land tenure security, CSA, and women’s empowerment.  

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Spam
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Love that your vision is focused around empowering women in agriculture! The history of your area is also very interesting.

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Team

Sprouting Farms Thanks so much! I admire your focus on supporting Appalachian foodways, something I've been personally excited to explore as some of my close friends are from WV :)

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