Over the past twenty years the marketing of African fresh vegetables in the United Kingdom has become dominated by large retailers that have adopted competitive strategies based on quality, year-round supply, and product differentiation. This has led to a dramatic change in marketing channels, from wholesale markets to tightly knit supply chains. Global value chain analysis is used to explain why the various stages of production and marketing have become much more closely integrated and to consider the likely outcome of a further round of restructuring occurring at the present time. Although the current trends may lead to a changing role for importers, the tendency towards the concentration of production and processing in Africa in the hands of a few large firms is likely to continue.
Environment and Planning A (2004) 36 (3) 491-509 [doi: 10.1068/a35281