Fresh Perspectives Issue 15. Smallholder Compliance with International Food Safety Standards is not a Fantasy: Evidence from African Green Bean Producers.
Globalization of world economies has opened a window of opportunity for many African countries. With the failure of structural adjustment programs to spur reasonable growth, many developing countries turned to production of non-traditional agriculture exports (NTAE) to diversify their agricultural exports and increase foreign exchange earnings. The early movers in Africa included South Africa, Cote d'Ivoire, Senegal, Egypt, and Kenya with Zambia, Ethiopia and Madagascar registering comparatively recent growth in such exports. In most of these countries, generally smallholders dominate the production of NTAE.
This paper presents strategies that have been used by some African countries to successfully maintain the participation of smallholders in high value fresh vegetable export businesses and therefore argues that IFSS necessarily need not marginalize smallholders. It summarises a study conducted between December 2005 and February 2006 using value chain analysis. It involves personal interviews with various participants in the green bean value chain and is based on case studies looking at smallholder’s role in green bean exports from Kenya, Zambia and Ethiopia to Europe.
International Institute for Environment and Development, London, UK, 2 pp.