Atkinson D (2013), Municipal commonage in South Africa: A critique of artificial dichotomies in policy debates on agriculture, African Journal of Range & Forage Science, Volume 30, Issue 1-2, 2013,
The paper critiques Vetter’s (in this issue) assertion that commercialisation of smallholder agriculture holds dangers for sustainable rangeland management. The paper argues that a range of policy options are required, including commercialisation and subsistence farming, large-scale and smallholder farming, a range of land tenure options, rural and peri-urban farming, and part-time farming. The case of municipal commonage land is useful to show the effectiveness of a flexible range of policy options regarding land ownership, farming scale and the social nature of farming. However, the key requirement, in all cases, is effective institutional development.
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