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Are food insecure smallholder households making changes in their farming practices? Evidence from east Africa

Smallholder farmers across east Africa have started to embrace climate-resilient farming approaches and technologies, according to this study by the Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) research programme. At the same time, the study suggests that the changes in farming practices tend to be marginal rather than transformational in nature and that high levels of food insecurity prevent many from making all of the changes needed in order to cope with a changing climate. The study is based on a survey of over 700 farming households in four east African countries. The survey found that farmers have adopted a variety of strategies to cope with climate change, including: adoption of short-cycle crop varieties and drought tolerant crops; planting of trees on farms; and intercropping. The study contributes to the evidence base of what smallholders are doing to adapt to changing circumstances, providing a range of indicators that will be monitored over time.