Implementation dilemma of agricultural policies: Trade-offs or synergies? Food and nutrition security implications of extension services and farm input subsidies.

The dilemma most governments face is how to balance implementation of various policies in the absence of research-based evidence of their impact. For the Malawi Government, the dilemma is how to balance budgetary support to farm input subsidies and other policies in the agricultural sector. This article estimates the effects of the residence of an agricultural extension officer in the community, receipt of extension advice and subsidised fertiliser on household dietary diversity, dietary variety and per capita consumption of macro and micro nutrients using the Intergrated Household Panel Survey data of 2010 and 2013 for Malawi. Empirical analyses employ fixed effects models and the results suggests that the residence of an agricultural extension officer in the community has positive effects on food and nutrition security. The results also show consistently insignificant effects of subsidised fertiliser and receipt of extension advice. However, subsidised fertiliser is found to have positive effects only on food security when it is combined with receipt of extension advice. These results suggests that policies which focus on promoting availability of agricultural extension officers in the community might be more effective and efficient in addressing food and nutrition insecurity and demonstrate the importance of synergies in policies' implementation. Acknowledgement :

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Conference Paper/ Presentation
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JEL Codes:
Q16; Q13

 Record created 2018-10-02, last modified 2020-10-28

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