Improving Producers’ Market Access
Alternative markets, such as Fair Trade and organics, offer the potential for empowering small-scale producers and alleviating rural poverty in the Global South. The growing demand amongst Northern consumers for products certified as meeting social or environmental criteria, has opened up new opportunities for small producers who traditionally use less chemical inputs and are also considered key beneficiaries of social justice campaigns. Our research assesses the opportunities and challenges for linking small farmers to these critical, high-value markets in both domestic and international arenas.
In addition to the challenges of meeting specialty market social and environmental standards, small-scale producers may encounter problems in accessing market information and satisfying consumers’ quality expectations. Our research reveals that strong producer associations and movement ties are critical in providing small producers with the long-term market relationships they need for poverty alleviation. We analyze the processes by which effective producer associations form, grow their membership, build organizational capacities, and improve member and household capabilities.
CFAT Personnel: Douglas Murray, Laura Raynolds, Jennifer Keahey & Nefratiri Weeks
Funding: United States Agency for International Development (USAID); Ford Foundation; Centro Internacional de la Papa (CIP); International Development Research Centre (IDRC)
- Raynolds, Laura T. and Jennifer Keahey. “Fair Trade: Social Justice and Production Alternatives.” In M. Parker, G. Cheney, V. Fournier, and C. Land (eds.) In Routledge Companion to Alternative Organization. New York, NY: Routledge. 2014.
- Raynolds, Laura T. and Siphelo U. Ngcwangu. “Fair Trade Rooibos Tea Networks: Connecting South African Producers and American Consumer Markets.” Geo-Forum. 41 (1): 74-83, 2010.
- Murray, Douglas and Jennifer Loomis. “No Como Veneno: Strengthening Local Organic Markets in the Peruvian Andes.” Interim project evaluation and market analysis for Centro Internacional de la Papa (CIP) and International Development Research Centre (IDRC), 2009.
- Murray, Douglas L., Laura T. Raynolds and Peter L. Taylor. “The Future of Fair Trade Coffee: Dilemmas for Latin America’s Small-Scale Producers.” Development in Practice 16 (2): 179-192, 2006.
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