Food Shortage Periods in Native Reserves

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Watt, L. W.
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To those who are directly interested in the well-being of the African in his own country, those times when it is inevitable that a large proportion of the population must suffer from shortage of food give cause for great anxiety. These periods of food shortage can be due to a multitude of causes, such as locust invasion, drought or flooding, low prices for cash crops, which cause a lack of confidence among the producers, land destruction by erosion, over-population, and so on. The complete apathy of the native cultivator who is directly affected by such shortages engenders a feeling of helplessness in those who are acquainted with the conditions under which food supplies are produced. Food shortage can be prevented or reduced in so many ways that it is in theory a danger which could be overcome in a few years. This is not the case, however, and it will take many years to educate the mass of the rising generation of native cultivators to think not only of today, but of tomorrow and of next year. Efforts to prevent famine should embrace methods which will give cultivators a chance to protect themselves from themselves, and be accompanied by repeated vocal and practical demonstration of every means at our disposal.
East African Agricultural and Forestry Journal, Iv (no 3), p. 361-364