Income diversification among pastoralists

Income diversification is an increasingly important means for herders to manage risk. The COMESA (Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa) policy brief on Income diversification among pastoralists (2009, 4pp) points out that the proportion of income from nonpastoral sources exceeds 20% for many dryland areas in Eastern and the Horn of Africa – a figure considerably higher than most policymakers assume. The brief distinguishes between “good” and “less good” forms of diversification. It highlights that irrigated agriculture and other expensive infrastructure projects in pastoral areas are not sustainable. Interventions that support small-scale enterprises in the rural areas can provide livelihood sources for poor and ex-pastoralists in ways that add value to the local economy and sustain livestock production by those who remain in pastoralism.

Posted on 12 January 2016 in Pastoralist Livelihoods & Nutrition