Tips and Best Practices to Maximize Farming: A 2024 Blueprint for Marginalized Communities

In 2024, the agricultural landscape will evolve rapidly, presenting both challenges and opportunities for farmers. For marginalized communities, mastering the art of farming is not just about cultivating crops; it’s about empowerment, sustainability, and economic opportunities.

In today’s world, technology is advancing innovative solutions for farmers,  driven by urgent global challenges and opportunities. However, as the world continues to advance, Africa remains excluded from the exponential growth. The digital divide continues to grow even further as limited access to information, connectivity issues, financial constraints, and technological literacy gaps pose substantial challenges for small-scale farmers. Climate change impact, escalating demand for global food security, and the crucial role of agriculture in economic empowerment all underscore the need for immediate action. Taking advantage of sustainable practices and adopting cutting-edge technologies ensures resilience, economic upliftment, and long-term resource preservation. However, many of these solutions benefit large-scale farmers, leaving behind smallholder farmers, who represent the majority of marginalized communities. How then do we empower smallholder farmers? First, we have to understand some of their key challenges.

Small, Mighty, but Severely Challenged!

The FAO states that smallholder farmers are at the center of the global food system, with over 70% of the 570 million farmers having less than a hectare. Despite their small number, smallholder farmers still account for feeding a substantial portion of the world’s population. With them being at the center, there are a few key challenges that AgenpoBread for the World, and One Acre Fund plead for many innovative solutions to consider:

  • Smallholder farming is often rain-fed – meaning the only source of water used comes from the sky!
  • Small farms depend predominantly on family labor, although they may hire outside help.
  • Smallholder farmers produce relatively small food volumes on small plots of land (compared to large or commercial-scale farmers).
  • They produce primarily for local consumption, but their commodities, such as maize, macadamia, and avocado, can find their way into the export market.
  • Smallholders generally have fewer resources and technology than commercial-scale farmers. I.e  they might till their land by hand instead of using tractors.
  • Smallholder farmers are often considered part of the informal economy – their livelihoods depend on a natural resource base and informal networks to access markets.
  • These farmers are also vulnerable to climate change and market price fluctuations.
  • Aging farmers population – they are growing weary with age, but young farmers are more interested in other careers.
  • Financial constraints – smallholder farmers struggle to gain access to finances.
  • Limited access to information – Smallholder farmers often lack access to timely and accurate information on weather, pest control, best farming practices, market prices, and new agricultural technologies. The digital divide makes things harder for small farmers because they might not have easy access to the internet or mobile phones. Technology is important in farming, but if farmers can’t get real-time information, it’s a big problem for them.

Sustainable Solutions, Best Practices for Mighty Farmers


With the challenges presented, it is key to provide practical solutions for the communities. Some of the key approaches that are positively impacting farmers are climate-smart agriculture, good conservation tillage, the adoption of new practices, and innovative solutions that give farmers affordable access to key information, markets, communities and weather alerts.

Climate Smart Farming

Climate-smart agriculture is an approach that helps farmers adapt to unpredictable weather patterns, resulting in greater harvest yields while reducing their impact on the environment. Sustainable and climate-smart farming practices, such as rainwater harvesting, agroforestry, and drought-resistant crop varieties, ensure resilience. However, smallholder farmers often take advantage of composting, mulching, crop diversification, intercropping, and box ridges and furrows to capture run-off and keep moisture in the soil – all techniques that help maintain and boost yields while tackling land degradation and improving soil health. Two key methods that will improve the lives of farmers in 2024 are diversification and composting, due to their simplicity and affordability. Integrating these techniques with real-time weather insights, empowers farmers to make informed decisions, fostering resilience and sustainable productivity in the face of varying climatic conditions. Brastorne’s mAgri platform makes this possible for farmers.

The mAgri platform significantly contributes to the success of climate-smart agriculture by providing essential tools for smallholder farmers. Through features like weather alerts, mAgri informs farmers about upcoming weather patterns, enabling them to anticipate rainfall for effective rainwater harvesting. This proactive approach aligns with climate-smart agriculture, helping farmers adapt to unpredictable weather conditions, ultimately leading to increased harvest yields while minimizing environmental impact.


Crop diversification serves as a pivotal strategy in modern agricultural practices, encompassing the simultaneous cultivation of a variety of crops. This not only elevates overall productivity but also enhances profitability by curbing production costs. One of its significant advantages is the mitigation of risks associated with commodity price fluctuations, a common concern when relying solely on a single crop. Additionally, diversification offers a safeguard against the adverse effects of highly variable weather conditions, thereby promoting resilience in the face of climate uncertainties.

Africa’s farming tool, mAgri, has an information section that operates like a library, playing a crucial role in supporting smallholder farmers in implementing strategies such as crop diversification. This feature allows farmers to explore details about different crops, including cultivation practices, environmental requirements, and market trends. Smallholder farmers, through this information,can make informed decisions about which crops to plant based on their specific conditions and goals. Crop diversification, with the support of mAgri, has becomes a more informed and strategic process.


Composting stands out as a vital sustainable practice that contributes to the circular economy within agriculture. This process involves recycling organic matter, such as leaves and livestock waste, to create nutrient-rich manure. Beyond the environmental benefits of waste reduction, effective composting plays a crucial role in restoring soil nutrients. Moreover, it serves as a practical solution in the face of droughts by enhancing soil moisture retention. The resulting improvements in soil structure and fertility not only boost crop yields but also foster long-term agricultural sustainability.

Access to experienced and knowledgeable communities is a powerful tool and mAgri provides that opportunity. It allows farmers to connect with other farming communities, playing a crucial role in enhancing composting practices. Facilitating communication and knowledge exchange among farmers, mAgri creates a dynamic platform for sharing insights, experiences, and best practices related to composting.

Farmers using mAgri can engage with peers who have successfully implemented composting in their own communities. They can share tips, challenges, and innovative ideas, creating a collaborative environment that promotes learning and improvement.

Conservation tillage

In addition to climate-smart agriculture, diversification, and composting, conservation tillage emerges as a valuable sustainable farming practice that can significantly benefit small-scale farmers. Conservation tillage focuses on minimizing soil disturbance during planting, a strategy that carries substantial environmental advantages.

By reducing soil disturbance, conservation tillage helps mitigate erosion, a critical concern for maintaining soil integrity. The preservation of soil structure is another key benefit, as minimal disturbance promotes the formation of stable aggregates and enhances the overall health of the soil. This practice also contributes to increased water retention, supporting crops during periods of water scarcity.

An Impactful Approach for Smallholder Farmers

Brastorne is making a positive impact on Africa’s smallholder farmers through its innovative mAgri platform. This platform acts as a bridge, connecting farmers who were previously not connected. It provides essential support to farmers by offering affordable inputs, strategies to manage weather risks, and access to fair market prices.

Using the USSD platform, which is designed for users without data plans or smartphones, farmers can access important information and resources. This includes training materials, a marketplace, weather updates, price tracking, and a supportive community. Brastorne’s mAgri platform is simplifying access to vital resources for farmers, contributing to a brighter future for Africa.

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