Speakers and presentations:
Session chair: Emorn Udomkesmalee, Mahidol University
Robyn Alders, Chatham House
Smallholder livestock and aquaculture policy environment: what’s required to achieve economic, environmental and social sustainability?
Presentation | Slides
Soledad Cuevas, SOAS University of London
Supporting small farmers in highly industrialized broiler value chains to promote rural livelihoods and nutrition security: A system dynamics approach
Presentation | Slides
Assessing the institutional environment for inclusive livestock value chains in Malawi
Sabine Homann-Kee Tui1
Andre van Rooyen1
1International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT)
2International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI)
Increasing imports of livestock products driven by population growth, demand for animal-based proteins, and unfavorable tariff structures in the region has increased the need for participation of smallholder livestock value chain (VC) actors in high value markets. However, smallholder-based livestock value chains (VCs) in Malawi are facing limited policy support and investments to improve local market structure and competitiveness (Gondwe 2005; Tebug et al. 2012; Maganga, Chigwa, and Mapemba 2015). This study assesses to what extent public policies and practices and industry behavior enable or hinder the sustainable development of smallholder-based livestock VCs in Malawi.
The study adopts a multi-chain approach (chicken, goat, dairy) beyond the point of production. It assesses blockages in the institutional environment of these VCs, which hinder their inclusive and efficient development. Leverage points are identified to strengthen the local market structure and upgrading opportunities for value addition for small- and medium-scale VC actors. A two-step research framework is adopted:
1. Value chain mapping from a policy perspective:
1.1. Map out relevant institutions, laws/regulations, policy processes affecting the VCs.
1.2. Conduct a stakeholder analysis to identify stakeholders and their relationship to the policy process. Analyze to what extent stakeholders facilitate or impede design and implementation of policies.
2. Policy analysis and recommendations:
2.1. Conduct a policy analysis, and develop a matrix of institutional constraints, prioritized in terms of key development outcomes (e.g. poverty, nutrition, and gender).
2.2. Develop policy recommendations that consider technical feasibility, implementation capacities, impacts for VC actors, time frame, and political acceptability.
- Ongoing innovation platforms and policy dialogue meetings with VC actors to identify/verify solutions to institutional constraints
- Desk research, policy review
- Key informant interviews to deepen issues identified through stakeholder engagements
- Focus group discussions to benefit from shared insights from stakeholders
Preliminary analysis of collected data (data collection ongoing) suggests that livestock VCs do not receive adequate policy support. As a result, the potential of livestock to improve economic, social and nutrition outcomes for the poor are not being realized. Significant opportunities exist for small- and medium-scale producers in all three VCs, as urbanization and increasing incomes have led to vibrant demand for livestock-related products. For example, the research finds that both urban and rural consumers increasingly demand meat from village chickens due to perceived better taste and nutritional value, representing a high potential niche market. However, critical institutional constraints are identified that affect small- and medium-scale producers’ potential to take advantage of these opportunities. Public investments are critically needed in the development of adequate infrastructure (e.g. transport, local processing and storage facilities), technical support (specifically, feed to reduce production costs and health control to increase productivity), and quality control and food safety regulations. Public policies and investments can result in necessary productivity gains, reduction of wastage, and value addition, which can increase producers’ incomes and improve nutritional outcomes by increasing the availability of cheap quality protein.
The current institutional environment in Malawi is unfavorable towards developing inclusive smallholder-based livestock VCs, which are critical to increase incomes and diversify diets through animal-sourced foods. Simultaneously, Malawi is experiencing an emerging nutrition transition whereby urban consumers are increasingly able to access cheap animal-based foods (mostly imported), whilst rural populations continue to exhibit protein deficiencies and minimal income growth. The disconnect between agriculture and nutrition both within the political structure and policy implementation is a critical driver for these dynamics. Increased integration of agriculture-nutrition concerns into policy making and implementation are essential to improve economic and social outcomes.
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