smallholder farmers supported


kilograms of chillies expected


lives financially improved


Many smallholder farmers in Malawi need support to improve their cultivation practices, but also to better organise and professionalise their operations. However, promoting behavior change cannot be achieved overnight, since most farmers rely on crop production strategies inherited from their ancestors. Therefore, we offer them practical support and work side by side with them in the fields. We ensure they have proper irrigation systems, quality inputs, and the right tools and equipment. In addition, our experienced partner Total LandCare provides extension services and training to make sure the farmers can produce high quality chillies at high volumes. With these reliable volumes and quality standards, we can link farmers to solid markets and quarantee fair prices. 


Our farmers grow the famous Malawian bird's eye chillies, known by the scientific name "capsicum frutescens". These chillies are one of the hottest and most pungent chillies in the world. They are small, thin, pointy peppers, which color red when they mature. They are green when unripe (but still eatable) and sometimes orange or purple depending on maturity. We teach our farmers how to produce top quality and consistent chillies and ensure drying and grading operations are at the highest standards. We carefully plan production with our customers in order to ensure timely delivery of the chillies after drying.

Human-elephant conflict

Liwonde National Park faces growing threats from human population pressures, manifested in increased human-wildlife conflicts. Human-wildlife conflicts are defined as situations in which wildlife negatively impact humans (physically, economically or psychologically) and humans likewise negatively impact wildlife. Conflicts with elephants are the biggest challenge for Liwonde, which led to the death of over 50 people over a period of five years prior to the involvement of African Parks. Elephants also cause human property and crop damage, especially to crops grown under irrigation during the dry season, as elephants are attracted to nutritious crops at a time when supply and quality of forage inside the park is relatively low. African Parks has made significant investments to minimise pressures on the park and its wildlife, including constructing a 180 km electric fence around the park perimeter, reducing the number of elephants from 900 to 600 through translocations, monitoring elephant movement data to facilitate evidence-based decision making, and initiating a beekeeping program with communities to produce and sell honey (elephants appear to dislike bees). These actions proved to be effective, but are not sufficient to completely solve the conflict. Growing spicy crops, such as bird’s eye chillies, just outside the park would provide a solution to these conflicts, as elephants appear to avoid fields with these crops.