Evaluating the impacts of in-kind productive transfers and extension training in Zambia

Baseline analysis of the integration of the Food Security Pack programme and farmer field schools

The Government of Zambia has prioritized the scaling up of the Food Security Pack (FSP) to address the economic hardships faced by vulnerable rural households in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. The FSP is an agricultural social protection package that provides a diverse basket of improved seeds, fertilizers, and other technologies to vulnerable, but labour endowed rural households. The ambition of the FSP is to support these households to sustainably increase production and diversification, and to transition from subsistence oriented to more market-oriented production. An important challenge facing the implementation and efficacy of the FSP are the constraints in linking beneficiaries of the programme with appropriate extension support. Zambia has a very high farmer to extension officer ratio, which forces extension officers to prioritize extension support for larger, and more resource endowed producers. As such, FSP beneficiaries often lack the appropriate information for using the FSP input packet in effective and sustainable ways, thus preventing a transition to higher agricultural production and exit from poverty. The baseline report will provide a snapshot of the current socioeconomic conditions of a random sample of 3000 eligible non-beneficiaries, FSP beneficiaries, and FSP+extension services beneficiaries, and will inform the government about its accuracy in their targeting.