Is a gendered value chain approach adequate to meeting both the objectives of increasing productivity and gender-equitable poverty reduction in the livestock and aquaculture sectors?
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Yes I agree
This all looks very promising. I do hope that the researchers and other partners will give attention to the informal / “grey” value chains that already exist for crop and livestock products that are often invisible to or undervalued by people working on formal-sector value chains. Women often play an important role in the informal sector and may be (knowingly or unknowingly) sidelined when the activity they are engaged in becomes formalised. ILRI has done some important research on this with respect to dairying, so I trust that at least this will be recognised and built upon in the mega-programme. I also hope that attention will be given to the local initiatives / innovations by women and men in these informal value chains (most of which are by no means “traditional”) as an entry point to recognising what brings added value to the kind of people who are engaged in them.
I would agree that an engendered value chain approach would be appropriate.
I would wonder though whether there is also a need to look at the roles of children and youth. In many traditional societies and smallholder systems they are important members of the production team in terms of husbandry as well as processing (milking/harvesting). They are also the farmers of the future and perhaps should be involved??
Being part of the value chain itself does not help.
It all depends on where the small fishers and aquaculturists are in the chain and the relations that they have with others.
Sometimes, it is better that one is not included in the chain!
But value chain analysis is useful, because it will show us where we are, and how we can go “up” tha chain and have more say in the market.
I like this attention to value chain as part of gender analysis. A graduate student of mine recently carried out a small study in Tanzania, which tried to chart the lower end of the value chain of two fish products (seaweed and finfish). While the main conclusion of the study was that hardly any value was added at the initial stages of catch/collection and primary processing and that the value added exponentially once the product left the hands of the small scale fishers in the coastal communities. In other words, the benefits and profits went entirely to middlemen and processors in the developed world.
I think adding value chain analysis will make crystal clear how exploited and underresourced women participating in the fishery usually are.