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Impact of international voluntary standards on smallholder market participation in developing countries

A review of the literature










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    Extraterritorial investments in agriculture in Africa: the perspectives of China and South Africa 2020
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    The 2008 global food price crisis, and the resurgence of food prices in 2010-2011, caused both widespread concern and expectations. On the one hand, countries whose food supply depends on procuring food from international markets saw food price spikes as threats to their national food security. On the other hand, investors saw in these price spikes an opportunity to make profitable investments in agriculture. Either as threat or opportunity, food price spikes raised interest in Africa, whose lands are fertile and have unrealised potential. Concerns of a possible land acquisitions in Africa, and in particular the impacts of Large-Scale Land-Based Investments in Agriculture (LSLBIA) on local communities, became prominent policy and academic themes. Unfortunately, quantifying the phenomenon has proved hard due to the difficulty of finding empirical evidence. As a result, debates are either theoretical or based on anecdotal evidence. This publication thus explores a different path, and explores the reasons why entities from China and South Africa were interested in investing in African agriculture. This publication examines the reasons why investors were interested in Africa, and the relationship that these bear to The Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (the ‘Voluntary Guidelines’ or ‘VGGT’). While primarily aimed at governments, the VGGT also contain important provisions that are applicable to the private sector. They focus on helping investors pursue their projects in ways that recognise and respect legitimate tenure rights and human rights. In addition, the VGGT also contain provisions and encourages good practices for responsible investment in land, forests and fisheries. The VGGT are a valuable tool for helping investors minimise risk while also safeguarding the rights of local communities. China and South Africa represent important sources of LSLBIA in Africa, although the bulk of such investment comes from western countries. Their investment may intensify in the future for a variety of reasons. First, China has the third largest land area in the world but its expansion through additional land use is limited. Second, the dual agricultural economy of South Africa is preventing commercial farming located in well-endowed areas from expanding into remote, resource-poor areas where small-scale subsistence-based production is prevalent. This publication assesses the extent to which selected investors from China and South Africa and the governments of those countries have adopted the best practices represented by the VGGT in relation to LSLBIA in
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    Food loss prevention and reduction analysis in Indonesia
    A case study on chili, cabbage and shallot
    2024
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    Food loss and waste within Indonesia's supply chains present significant challenges to both environmental sustainability and efficient natural resource utilization. This pervasive issue spans from food production to retail, affecting the ability of supply chain stakeholders to invest in essential infrastructure improvements. Food waste, in particular, accumulates at various stages, including retail, catering services, and households, further straining natural resources and exacerbating climate change impacts.In Indonesia, the reduction and prevention of food losses assume strategic importance as it directly impacts food availability, accessibility, and the well-being of consumers. Additionally, it alleviates pressure on natural resources, supports the growth of agribusiness, and enhances the livelihoods of farmers and other actors along the supply chains. Key factors closely linked to addressing food losses in Indonesia include finance, technology, knowledge, and market dynamics. Alarmingly, horticultural commodities, especially vegetables, experience losses exceeding 60 percent. Minimizing food losses not only bolsters productivity for agripreneurs but also improves food security and nutrition for all, from vulnerable smallholder farmers to micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).To address these challenges, Indonesia has enacted national law No. 13/2020 on horticulture, encompassing fruits and vegetables, with the aim of creating jobs, enhancing production, productivity, quality, added value, competitive advantage, and market share. In a recent study conducted between June and December 2022, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Center of System, a logistics research institution, analysed food losses in chili, cabbage and shallot supply chains. These commodities, predominantly cultivated by smallholder farmers, play a vital role in stabilizing food prices, controlling regional inflation, and ensuring food availability and accessibility. The study not only identifies the extent of quality and quantity losses but also provides practical solutions for their reduction.Crucially, enhancing the implementation of hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP), good manufacturing practices (GMP), and good hygiene practices (GHP) is emphasized, particularly during harvest, transportation, handling and storage. Recommendations include establishing post-harvest technical assistance facilities, agrologistic centres, and value-added processing facilities to mitigate losses due to quality degradation. Furthermore, the abstract underscores the need for innovation in technology, private-sector investment, and raising public awareness as decisive elements in substantially reducing food loss. In conclusion, addressing food loss is paramount for enhancing food security, supporting sustainable livelihoods, and fortifying the overall food system in Indonesia.
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    Characterization of the aquafeed sub-sector in the Kyrgyz Republic: an aquafeed value chain analysis and preparation of a business plan for establishing a feed mill 2018
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    Among many other factors, feed is a limiting factor, which accounts for a major share of the total operational cost of the aquaculture sector in Kyrgyz Republic. This study aims to analyze the value chain of aquafeed sub-sector including their possible constraints and develop a business plan for establishing small-scale aquafeed mill in the Kyrgyz Republic. This is the first post-USSR country case study which assesses the current status of the aquafeed sub-sector, aquafeed value chain, on-farm feeding and feed management practices, performance of different actors in terms of value addition and profitability, and feed regulations, institutions and policies and presents a business plan for small-scale aquafeed in Kyrgyz Republic. The study identifies the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in this sub-sector, and suggests a number of development strategies which would improve the performance of feed industry and farmers’ access to better feeds and ultimately support the development of aquaculture sector in Kyrgyz Republic. Quantitative data analysis result shows that the Kyrgyz aquafeed sub-sector is still in its infancy and its value chain is very simple; including only few actors comprising feed input suppliers, aquafeed producers, aquafeed traders and fish farmers, and all of them are doing their business profitably. Feed is a crucial input in fish farming which accounts for about 65 – 75 percent of the operational cost of fish production, which means that a substantial part of fish farmers’ income is transferred to feed manufacturers. Good quality feed is a prerequisite for increasing aquaculture productivity in Kyrgyz Republic where particularly fish farmers are using very little volume of commercial feed as supplementary feed. With potential of aquaculture intensification and lack of quality feed, establishment of a commercial feed mill in the country for both carps and trout may have a strong justification. The primary competitors of a new feed mill would be the existing locally manufactured feeds and the commercial feed that are being imported. Imported feeds are mainly for trout and often expensive and not available in the local market throughout the country. Public-private partnership operated feed mill in Kyrgyz Republic with the capacity of 500 kg/hour is expected to be profitable, with an anticipated profit of USD13 617 in year one, rising to USD 97 980 in year five. The Internal Rate of Return (IRR) of such a mill is estimated to be 19.1 percent, which is expected to be reasonably good. Therefore, the study recommends establishing a public-private partnership aquafeed mill in Kyrgyz Republic that would be feasible, viable and profitable. The major factors impacting on the performance of the value-chain relate to the feed ingredients, feed production, fish farmers, marketing and other service providers (e.g., financial, academic and research institutions, extension services). Aquafeed value chain shows reasonable promise although there are constrains and a lack of institutional, regulatory and policy environment to oversee this sectoral development. Aquafeed subsector can play an important role in aquaculture sector development as it has strong backward and forward linkages with aquaculture sector, which can eventually play an important role in the overall development of Kyrgyz economy. The study recommends various measures to develop the sub-sector including the establishment of additional feed mills and use of locally available raw feed materials, developing and strengthening quality control and inspection facilities, providing training and better organizational management of fish farms and improving the institutional, legal and policy environment.

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