Mali is one of eight countries targeted for investment under the renewed Gates Foundation Agricultural Development Program. At a recent seminar held at the International Food Policy Research Institute, the division’s deputy director, Prabhi Pingali, emphasised that the Gates Foundation has a “deep conviction that unless you solve the problem of low agriculture production systems you are not going to create sustainable change in hunger and poverty reduction.”
According to SciDev Net, since the programme began the Foundation has directed US$1.7 billion into agriculture research towards smallholder agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Pingali said at the seminar that the foundation wants to understand the entire value chain "from molecule to mouth" and “look at ways in which you can sustainably improve productivity growth. [Specifically looking at] environmental, social and economic trade-offs as you improve the intensity of small-holder farming”.