Tobacco Growing Alternatives

The Africa Tobacco-Free Initiative also recognizes the need to promote economically viable alternatives to tobacco production as a way to prevent possible adverse social and economic impacts on populations whose livelihoods depend on tobacco production. The global tobacco industry is a highly specialized oligopoly that depends exclusively on the cultivation of the tobacco crop.
In order to find economically sustainable alternatives to tobacco growing, it is necessary to address not only income and crop profitability but all aspects of farmers’ livelihoods. A framework for alternative livelihoods that goes beyond crop profitability to address the problem holistically could form a bridge between academic findings and policy decisions. The economically viable alternatives approach is considered to be a good approach to implementing Articles 17 and 18 of the WHO FCTC along with economically sustainable alternatives to tobacco growing or crop diversification.
In Africa, tobacco growing promotes child labor and damage to the environment among many other issues. We;

  • Undertake up-to-date economic studies of alternative livelihoods.
  • Undertake up-to-date research of the tobacco economics for each region and variety in Africa.
  • Carry out modeling for each region within Africa   
  • Undertake a study of labor markets in tobacco growing countries in Africa.



People have died from tobacco-related diseases in Africa since the opening of the first FCTC working group on 28 October 1999.

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