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Strengthening the Climate for Sustainable Agricultural Growth
The 2021 GAP Report urges the acceleration of productivity growth at all production scales to meet consumers’ needs and address current and future threats to human and environmental well-being.
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The agricultural productivity imperative
Hear from industry experts about why agricultural productivity can no longer be ignored if we hope to meet the needs of a growing world.
Explore productivity by country
Using the interactive map, survey agricultural productivity across the globe.
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Search our practicable knowledge base
Read the latest from the Harvest 2050 Blog. Find examples of partnerships for productivity from around the world. Explore research by experts in productivity, sustainability, and food security.
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Ann Steensland leads the GAP Report Initiative for CALS Global at the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. In this role, she serves as the lead author of the Global Agricultural Productivity Report, or GAP Report, an annual analysis of global progress toward productive sustainable food and agricultural systems. Her research areas include sustainable approaches for increasing the productivity of small-scale agriculture, improving livelihoods for small-scale farmers, and connecting small-scale and emerging farmers to markets. Prior to joining Virginia Tech, Ms. Steensland was the Deputy Director of the Global Harvest Initiative and the Chief of Staff of the Alliance to End Hunger. Ms. Steensland has a B.A. in International Relations and an M.A. in African History. She was awarded the Lawrence Levine Prize for her M.A. thesis exploring racial, political, and environmental aspects of the commercialization of agriculture in South Africa.
Jim Gaffney is a general development officer in the Center for Agricultural Led Growth at USAID. an experienced professional in the seed and crop protection industry with a passion for developing strategy and for designing and driving collaborations to build scientific capacity and encourage appropriate regulatory policy. Prior to joining USAID, Dr. Gaffney worked at Corteva Agriscience for 10 years as Global Regulatory Strategy Lead. He has a strong personal commitment to enable technology for the benefit of farmers and society, with a deep and current understanding of the public and private sectors and for donor organization needs and opportunities. At Corteva, he developed global regulatory approval strategies by working closely with program leadership teams, regulatory science, and researchers to drive aggressive and predictable timelines to product advancement. Dr. Gaffney maintains a passion for agricultural development in Africa, borne from his days as a Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon, Central Africa, and as a former farm kid. His family raised corn, soybeans, and hogs in southwest Minnesota.
Siboniso “Boni” Moyo is deputy director general for research and development at the International Livestock Research Institute. Between 2015 and 2016, she was program leader of ILRI’s animal science for sustainable productivity program. From 2006−2014, Dr. Moyo was ILRI’s regional representative in Southern Africa. She has 25 years’ experience conducting livestock research and development in Zimbabwe and southern Africa. Her fields of specialization include breed performance evaluation, livestock production systems, livestock research and management, and partnership development. Dr. Moyo has an MSc in animal husbandry from the Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow and a PhD in animal science from the University of Pretoria. Before joining ILRI she was National Director for Livestock Production and Development in Zimbabwe (2002–2005).
Jehiel Oliver is the founder and CEO of Hello Tractor, an innovative shared-economy platform that makes tractor usage affordable to marginalized farmers in sub-Saharan Africa. Mr. Oliver is responsible for the overall management of the Hello Tractor team, strategy, and partnerships. Prior to Hello Tractor, Jehiel founded Aya Consulting, a boutique development. At Aya he worked in over ten countries, including conflict zones. Through his work in agriculture and rural markets, Mr. Oliver recognized a real need for low-income (majority women) farmers to access affordable farm machinery, leading him to found Hello Tractor. In addition to his duties at Hello Tractor, Mr. Oliver also served on the board of H4H, Inc., an impact investment fund providing mortgage reinsurance for South African communities affected by HIV/AIDS. He also serves as board treasurer of Shared Interest, a loan guarantee fund for agriculture and financial sector development in sub-Saharan Africa. Mr. Oliver began his career in the U.S. investment banking and private equity industries.
Yield and total factor productivity are ratios of outputs to inputs, but they are not the same, and the distinction matters.
Yield measures output per unit of a single input, for example, the amount of crops grown on a hectare of land. Yields can increase through productivity growth, but they can also increase by applying more inputs, called input intensification. Therefore, an increase in yield may or may not represent improvements in sustainability.
Total factor productivity captures the interaction between multiple agricultural inputs and outputs. (Ortiz-Bobea et al., 2021) TFP growth indicates that more farmers generate more crops, livestock, and aquaculture products with the same amount or less land, labor, fertilizer, feed, machinery, and livestock. As a result, TFP is a powerful metric for evaluating and monitoring the sustainability of agricultural systems.