Tag: Africa

Food prices in Africa

Food prices in Africa respond in familiar ways to changes in the global environment, but there are a number of unique characteristics that have to be accounted for in understanding how these prices play out in domestic markets. African countries are price takers in global agricultural commodity markets, and face high farm gate to consumer costs, which are a major driver of food price inflation. Furthermore, the uncertainty that accompanies poor policy formulation and implementation distorts markets and results in the skewing of investment to mitigate the negative impacts of policy uncertainty rather than to build future opportunities. Finally, the high levels of poverty as well as of inequality distort consumer markets, which are fragmented by these extremes, and which compete with informal markets and with own consumption. In this paper, we address the role that these factors play in understanding trends in food prices across a spectrum of commodities in Ghana, Kenya, South Africa and Zambia. These characteristics make it difficult to find relevant and timely data to help understand what is really going on in the real world.

Direct access to markets by farmers and the role of traders: insights from Kenyan and Tanzanian leafy vegetables markets

The research literature shows that agriculture has potential for development, job creation and structural change if agricultural value chains are considered in their entirety: from inputs, to farm, through processing, until marketing. This is particularly important in the case of Africa, where agriculture contributes in a major way to GDP and employment. However, this focus on value chains does not seem to have been accompanied by attention to the diversity of actors operating along value chains. Based on an extensive literature review on access to markets by farmers and on participatory research with farmers, traders, and sectoral stakeholders of leafy vegetables value chains in Kenya and Tanzania, this study argues that the role played by traders in local fresh produce markets in Africa is poorly understood and supported. It is argued that powerful narratives about the benefits of direct access to market by farmers, which are also present in academic literature, are sometimes overoptimistic, or interpreted beyond their scope and applied regardless of the specific features of actors and produce. The study shows that the leafy vegetables trade provides self-employment for many women, and that it has positive impacts on other groups, notably farmers.

The African Indigenous Vegetables Value Chain Governance in Kenya

Increasingly, food security interventions in developing economies are adapting value chain approaches to facilitate the integration of smallholders into high margin value chains. In Kenya, the resurgence of African Indigenous Vegetables due to their medicinal value and rich micronutrients is a case in point. The vegetables are cultivated by smallholders, and the supply has not matched the demand in the high margin markets among urban consumers. Access to such high margin markets necessitates that smallholders gain entry or upgrade into the networks of those buyers who possess considerable control of these value chains. There is limited value chain scholarship on chain governance and its implication for smallholder participation in Kenya. This study investigated how value chain governance influences farmer participation in vegetable markets and food security in Kenya. This study employed exploratory case study design to provide chain architecture, isolate primary actors, their roles, relations, constraints and opportunities for upgrading by smallholders. A mixed method approach involving a multistage sampling technique of 339 respondents was employed to bring to the surface insights on chain architecture, market margins and governance structures and their implications as regards upgrading trajectories for small-scale farmers in Kenya. Thematic analysis was used for data analysis. Spot ...

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  • Scopus SJR (2022): 0.27
  • Scopus CiteScore (2022): 2.0
  • WoS Journal Impact Factor (2022): 1.2
  • WoS Journal Citation Indicator (2022): 0.45
  • ISSN (electronic): 2063-0476
  • ISSN-L 1418-2106



Publisher Name: Institute of Agricultural Economics Nonprofit Kft. (AKI)

Publisher Headquarters: Zsil utca 3-5, 1093-Budapest, Hungary

Name of Responsible Person for Publishing:        Dr. Pal Goda

Name of Responsible Person for Editing:             Dr. Attila Jambor

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

The publication cost of the journal is supported by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

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