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How do producer organisations enhance farmers' empowerment in the context of fair trade certification?

Sirdey N., Lallau B.. 2020. Oxford Development Studies, 48 (2) : p. 166-180.

DOI: 10.1080/13600818.2020.1725962

In the fair trade (FT) coffee sector, collective dynamics are viewed as a prerequisite for empowerment. The question of whether and how collective organisations empower farmers in the context of FT has yet to be fully explored. Using the concepts of collective agency and empowerment, this paper analyses the case of four farmers' groups involved in two FT certified producer organisations in Peru. The results show that collective dynamics are drivers of change in this context oand help provide a 'power to' change coffee-related activities. They also generate a sense of 'power with', which improves group visibility and capacity to build new partnerships. Farmers gain the opportunity to develop their livelihood activities and women farmers develop 'power from within'. Despite that, collective action still focuses primarily on coffee and members-only projects. Inclusive rural development depends on extending 'power with' to other agricultural domains and to networks in the social and economic spheres.

Mots-clés : autonomisation; agriculteur; association d'agriculteurs; organisation paysanne; certification; agriculture collective; coffea; fair trade [en]; pérou

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