The Implications of Agroecology and Conventional Agriculture for Food Security and the Environment in Africa
As global climate continues to change, changes need to be made in our production systems to ensure global food production. These constraints are daunting in Africa, as Africa is the most vulnerable region to climate change and variability. Agroecology provides a unique opportunity for Africa to achieve the twin challenges of food security and environmental resilience. This chapter aims at examining the relative contributions of agroecology and conventional agriculture towards resilient food security in Africa. The chapter examines the theoretical foundations and components of these two paradigms as well as their contributions to food security in Africa. This chapter also examines the likely benefits and challenges associated with these systems and discusses in an integrated manner which of these options offers the most likely resilient agricultural revolution for Africa. The methodology is based on a bibliometric review of publications in the grey and peer-reviewed literature on this subject. The compendium of 49 suitable studies was culled through search engines such as Google Scholar, Scopus, SCI, and ISI Web of Science. It is observed that agroecology needs more valorization to be able to match the yields of conventional agriculture in Africa. Since agriculture in Africa is mostly in the hands of smallholders, production is generally under natural conditions driven by limited access to conventional production inputs. Agroecology will require inputs from conventional production to be able to sustain production, except the system is valorized.