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Department of Agri-Sciences

The department of Agri-Sciences aims at contributing  to the human capital development required to spur transformational and  sustainable agricultural and sustainable development in Malawi. The department is motivated by the status quo of the agricultural sector in Malawi, which is highly skewed towards crop and animal production with most of the output being sold or exported raw. The minimal farmer participation in the agricultural value chains and the presence of middlemen at multiple levels of the value chains deprive farmers of meaningful incomes. Furthermore, as evidenced by poverty prevalence rates in the country, decades of traditional crop and animal production have failed to move most farmers and other agricultural players from the poverty trap perhaps due to the high production costs of most traditional crops such as maize and tobacco. Plantation crops such as coffee, sugar, tea, macadamia, and other nuts are major foreign exchange earners for Malawi. These crops also allow farmers to use the otherwise unused or unusable land profitably either as a group when they are organized or as out-growers when they work with bigger players. Furthermore, the department is motivated to contribute to the comprehension of the rapid changes affecting communities and the larger society attributed to cultural, economic, technological, political, climate change, food security, environmental and human factors at different levels in the society.

Given the foregoing, the Department of Agri-Sciences was established to develop programs that target enterprising applicants who are either aspiring or current agricultural entrepreneurs and who are passionate to be part of transforming Malawi’s agricultural sector into one of the most thriving agricultural sectors in the region and Africa as a whole. Furthermore, the department also offers the opportunity to respond to the emerging need for Transformative Community Development professionals with enough competence and technical knowledge to contribute to Malawi’s farming and community development sectors.

Core functions of the department

  • To produce graduates with agricultural value chain knowledge, tools, skills and appropriate attitudes in promotion, production, processing, and marketing of high-value crops;
  • To produce graduates with appropriate and in-depth knowledge, tools, skills, and attitudes to facilitate and promote sustainable and equitable rural development;      
  • To conduct research in transformative community development;
  • To implement various outreach services aimed at providing solutions to society’s problems; and
  • To contribute to the effective and efficient running of the University through
  • participation in various committees of the department, faculty, and the University to contribute to the effective and efficient running of programs and projects.

Department Values

  • Excellency service delivery
  • Entrepreneurial and innovation spirit
  • Collaboration and team work
  • Integrity