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Herbicides to cut hand-weeding in Africa

Greater use of herbicides on smallholdings in sub-Saharan Africa can reduce the time spent hand-weeding by up to some 24,000 million hours, according to a study by the US CropLife Foundation’s Crop Protection Research Institute. It is estimated that herbicides are used on just 5% of the approximately 180 million smallholdings of up to 1 ha in the region. In 2008, a project co-ordinated by the CropLife Foundation in Kenya and Malawi showed that the cost of herbicides was 50% lower than hand-weeding 25 maize plots, the study notes.

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