(Re)claiming power in value chains: A guide for small-scale farmers and their advocates
This guide is intended to support smallholder farmers, and advocates working closely with them, in exercising more agency and living more independently according to their own priorities. It aims to assist smallholders in making free choices in relation to farm production, markets and trade. Farmers with agency can negotiate with, and challenge, the people and institutions that affect their lives.
The guide’s starting point is farmers’ own knowledge, experience and goals. It advises farmers on how to strengthen their position relative to more powerful local, national and global market actors. It shows how farmers can: co-create a vision and action plan to work together for the benefit of their livelihoods, businesses and communities; understand the forces that dominate and influence local, national and global value chains; know their legal rights; organise to increase their power; and act together to achieve their goals. There is information and advice on how farmers’ groups can negotiate fairer contracts with companies, advocate local and national laws and policies to protect their interests, and prepare for climate change and unexpected disruptions to production. As well as smallholder farmers’ groups, their advocates and allies, this guide may be useful to other actors such as policymakers, financial institutions, responsible investors and other development practitioners.