The Gendered Implications of the Expansion in Commercial Sugarcane Production: A Case Study of Contract Farming in Magobbo, Zambia

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  • This paper presents evidence on the gender differentiated effects in the nucleus-estate outgrower arrangement from a case study of a sugarcane outgrower scheme in the community of Magobbo, Zambia. Specifically, the paper explores women’s participation in the scheme, access to employment, decision-making, control of household income, and access to natural resources. Women are disadvantaged in these areas overall, though there is a key generational difference. As well, both women and men enjoy increased economic stability and improvements in family diets. I find that the outcomes observed are influenced by: 1) the existing inequalities in access to land and discriminatory gender norms; 2) the institutional arrangements of the outgrower model; and 3) the gendered division of labour. These findings contribute a nuanced discussion of the gender differentiated effects of agricultural investments to the literature on women in contract farming and large-scale land acquisitions for agriculture.

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  • Copyright © 2015 the author(s). Theses may be used for non-commercial research, educational, or related academic purposes only. Such uses include personal study, research, scholarship, and teaching. Theses may only be shared by linking to Carleton University Institutional Repository and no part may be used without proper attribution to the author. No part may be used for commercial purposes directly or indirectly via a for-profit platform; no adaptation or derivative works are permitted without consent from the copyright owner.
Date Created
  • 2015


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