Smallholder engagement with the private sector
Demand for agricultural output is increasing in domestic and regional markets in Africa. At the same time export opportunities for agricultural products are also on the rise. Growing economies and high urbanisation rates contribute to these developments.
EPS PEAKS has published a Topic Guide, written by Steve Wiggins and Sharada Keats, on smallholder engagement with the private sector. The guide looks at how policy-makers can stimulate smallholder agricultural development to take advantage of the opportunities to become better linked to markets and formal enterprises that have the capital and know-how that farmers lack, for example in supply chain logistics.
This publication is particularly relevant because it shows the linkage between inclusive business and agriculture and agri-food markets, which are determining factors of food security. Furthermore, it also articulates the interdependence of policy-makers and farmers. Three perspectives are used to frame thinking about the main issues: agricultural development policy, rural market failures and a business view, with regard to high start-up costs and learning thresholds. Taking these perspectives have resulted in a few key messages, such as why market failures require public support to the private sector.