Ensuring food security in which a lot of effort and investment is being exerted upon has been made one of our foremost priorities in our national development strategy, As food is one of the basic needs of human beings, an effort to ensure food security does not require a political or philosophical stand. As getting or acquiring food is one of the first necessities in life; hence no individual or a society can place any other task prior to this one.
As the demand of food is ever increasing with the change in lifestyle and an increase of population, mankind has always been looking for ways to produce more. Thereby, societies that have had the chance to develop their agricultural system were able to increase their productivity and hence control the market and earn a profit. In contrast, developing societies that are yet to develop their agricultural systems have failed in achieving self-reliance in food and therefore have become victims of foreign interferences and political exploitations. Hence, to assume most of the problems that rile today’s Africa stem from food shortage isn’t far from the truth.
Perhaps many reasons could be provided as to the reason why Africa has failed to ensure food security. However, the primary reason is because of the failure of African nations to modernize their agricultural system by upgrading the traditional methods to satisfy demand due to incessant interferences on the part of the colonizing forces and the policies of exploitation they pursued. Even though the colonizing forces have introduced modern agricultural methods in some parts, their main objective was to bring to meet the demand requirements of European markets.
Moreover, Africans, who started leading their lives through an employment in those European establishments found themselves going farther from agriculture, and the remaining still practice traditional farming methods. As a result, today a farmer in Africa can only produce food that is sufficient for 1.5 humans, whilst a farmer elsewhere can produce food that’s sufficient for thousands more.
Africa that exports about 96% of the world’s diamonds, 63 % of gold, 69% copper and zinc, 32% chromium, 66% of peanuts, 40% of olive oil, 25% of coffee, cotton and so on has failed to achieve food security. But nonetheless, in order for Africa to be able to meet the demand requirements of the other raw materials, food is being provided through aid. And all the policies, pressures and burdens that come associated with this aid has the intention of keeping Africa in the status quo, a status quo in which the continent is always a source of exploitable raw materials.
Hence, an inability to ensure or achieve food security, regardless of the presence of natural resources or not makes a nation prone to exploitation and dependency. As it is, the development of agriculture and ensuring food security is the foremost foundation of political and economic emancipation. And developing a system of agriculture that produces more than enough food paves way for the development of other sectors and industries. Therefore, ensuring food security is the main source and foundation for progress.