Publications des agents du Cirad


Linking small holder farmers to markets : lessons learned from literature review and analytical review of selected projects

Biénabe E., Coronel C., Le Coq J.F., Liagre L., Sanz R.. 2004. Washington : World Bank, 2 vol. (82, 54 p.).

The document consists of three parts. The first part, called issue paper, first underlines the issues and challenges of farmer's linkages with the agricultural markets resulting from the evolution of markets and policies, and illustrates the World Bank involvement in this matter through a project portfolio overview. In a second step, the characteristics of the agricultural products and of the markets are presented to give insight into the diversity of the farmers' possible linkages. Then, the diversity of smallholder farmers' situations and strategies are characterized and a typology of smallholders is proposed. The second part presents an in-depth analysis of the way projects support farmers' better connection to markets. Main findings are drawn from both a literature and a projects review. Projects are characterized according both to the types of interventions they implement and to the approach they adopt. Five interventions types are distinguished. These are: - provision of infrastructures and equipment, - strengthening of the individual, collective and public capacities. - provision of technical and economic services to farmers, - provision of new institutional arrangements among actors, - promotion of new institutional environment. For each type of intervention, a careful assessment of their potential and limits to support farmers in benefiting from their connection to markets is proposed based on both literature results and projects lessons learned. Both theoretical criteria based on barriers to entry, production and transaction risks, economies of scale and social capital dimensions (see table 13) and operational criteria centered on income generation and repartition, the potential spill over effects and the sustainability of the impacts (see tables on performance criteria) were used to characterize interventions impacts even though information on these aspects is limited. The study also shows how the projects use the different interventions according to the approach they follow and how this contributes to an improved linkage of farmers to the markets. Two major types of approaches are considered: targeted approaches, aiming at strengthening smallholders' position in existing markets or aiming at facilitating their insertion into new markets; and global approaches striving to create an environment conducive to the development of agricultural economic activities and exchanges. The characterization of each approach is mainly based on the projects review. The third part draws on the second part main findings to propose transverse lessons.

Mots-clés : marché; commerce; petite exploitation agricole; contrainte; projet de développement; Étude de cas; organisation paysanne; madagascar; guinée; mali; bénin; togo; sénégal; nigéria; république-unie de tanzanie; argentine; bolivie (État plurinational de); honduras; jordanie; chine; bangladesh; stratégie paysanne

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