After world war II, a starving europe, its farms ruined by the most destructive conflict in human history, leaned heavily on growers south of the Sahara. Wheat from Kenya, maize from Zimbabwe, and fruits and vegetables from western and southern Africa adorned European tables. African farmers prospered, and by the early 1960s, they supplied 8 percent of the world's tradable food. Now that figure ... [Show full abstract] is less than 2 percent. Sub-Saharan farmers lag their counterparts elsewhere in nearly every measure that counts: crop yields, use of irrigation, fertilizer, and high-quality seeds, and access to capital, electricity, and transportation.