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Information for 16028IIED

Commodity exchanges and smallholders in Africa

Peter Robbins

Report/paper, 45 pages

The overall objective of this short study is to determine the effectiveness of newly developed commodity exchanges in Africa as a means of improving smallholder farmer linkages to markets, particularly formal markets, and the advantages in terms of new opportunities, more reliable trading relationships and improved incomes, compared with traditional commodity trading routes. Where possible to compare typical means of market linkage, whether this is through individual or farmer organisations, to wholesale markets and other trading relationships such as fair trade and contracting. The basis of the study being to determine whether commodity exchanges have provided a positive impact on farmer marketing channels, and have assisted in upgrading marketing institutions that support the smallholder community. The target commodities for the study are coffee, maize and beans.

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Publication information

  • IIED code: 16028IIED
  • Published: Jul 2011 - IIED, SFL
  • Theme: Sustainable markets
  • ISBN: 978-1-84369-797-8
  • Language: English

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Project information

Millions of farmers in Africa depend on export markets for their livelihoods. But recent market trends have led to declining small farmer participation. Yet, these farmers have the skill and soil to provide the high-quality products the food industry seeks. This collaborative initiative engaged with research, civil society and private sector partners to develop new business models across a variety of sectors that enable smallholders to participate in sustainable trading relationships with international businesses and thereby improve their livelihoods.

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New business models for sustainable trade

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