Do import restrictions really benefit the local poor in West Africa?

By

Isabel Knößlsdorfer, doctoral researcher at Georg-August University of Göttingen

Protectionist policies like tariffs supposedly protect domestic producers if they cannot compete with cheaper imported products. Some African countries have therefore opted to impose such import restrictions for a number of products. For the case of chicken imports in Ghana, this study analyses whether restrictions would lead to overall positive or negative welfare effects among households.

Demand for poultry meat is increasing in many places and cannot be met by domestic production. ©ToniEtyang

By Isabel Knößlsdorfer

Isabel Knößlsdorfer is a Docotoral Researcher at the Chair of International Food Economics and Rural Development at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen. Knößlsdorfer has studied Culture and Society of Africa at the University in Bayreith and for her masters she went to the University of Passau and studied Development Studies. Her research interests lie in Food Security and Dietary Diversity, Inequality and Poverty, Agrobiodiversity and Rural Development.

All contributions

This article first appeared as a news item in Rural21 and is part of a media cooperation between Rural21 and weltohnehunger.org.

 

.

Our study draws on data from the 7th round of the Ghana Living Standards Survey (GLSS7) from 2016/2017, a nationally representative household survey with about 14,000 household observations. The data includes information on chicken consumption and production, while distinguishing between consumption of fresh and frozen chicken. Based on market reports and other literature, it is fair to assume that the frozen chicken meat is imported, while the fresh meat is domestically produced. Additional local market price data were also collected in 2016/2017 as part of the GLSS7 and used to compute regional chicken prices.

 

Descriptive statistics show that around 43 per cent of all households consumed any chicken in 2017. At 36 per cent, frozen chicken consumption is much more common than consumption of fresh chicken (6 %). Around 15 per cent of all households owned chicken, either for the production of eggs or meat. Only 4 per cent sold any chicken during the 12-month survey period. The proportion of households hurt directly by cheap chicken imports is therefore rather small.

 

Regarding the distribution across rural and urban areas, rural households are more likely to own chicken and to sell any chicken than urban households, where only seven per cent own chicken. Consumption-wise, urban households are more likely to buy chicken from the market – either frozen or fresh – than to consume their own chicken. In both rural and urban areas, poor households are more likely to sell chicken and consume their own chicken than non-poor households. To identify poor households, we used the official poverty line, as defined by the Ghana Statistical Service (2018) for the GLSS7 data. A household is defined as poor if its consumption expenditures are below 1,761 Ghanaian cedi per adult equivalent and year.

 

In the first scenario, with an increase of the import tariff on chicken from the current 35 per cent to hypothetical 50 per cent, prices for chicken meat would rise by about 11 per cent for imported and 6 per cent for domestic chicken, respectively. In the second scenario, with a prohibitive tariff, prices for imported chicken would increase so much that this market segment would cease to exist, and imports would drop to zero. Prices for domestic chicken would then rise by 34 per cent. These new prices would affect consumption and production of chicken in Ghana as follows.

 

On the consumption side, only those households who purchase chicken products from the market would be affected. In the first scenario, consumption of imported chicken would decrease by 6 per cent, whereas consumption of domestic chicken would decrease by 3 per cent. In the second scenario, the changes are more drastic, as consumption of imported chicken would decrease by 100 per cent and consumption of domestic chicken by 17 per cent.

 

While consumption would decrease, as expected, market supply levels among those households that sold any chicken would increase.

 

In the first scenario domestic chicken sales quantities would increase by 3 per cent. In the second scenario, sales quantities would rise by 17 per cent. Accordingly, average incomes of these households would increase by 22 per cent and 74 per cent in the two scenarios, respectively. While these are large effects, they only affect a small proportion – about four per cent – of all households as the rest are not involved in chicken sales.

 

As expected, higher import tariffs would lead to welfare losses on the consumption side and to welfare gains on the supply side.

 

The proportion of households that would gain from additional import restrictions – those who produce chicken – is much smaller than the proportion of households that would lose as consumers.

 

Thus, the average consumption losses would be much bigger than the average gains from additional sales, meaning that the overall welfare effects of higher import tariffs would be negative. The total negative welfare effects would be much larger with a prohibitive import tariff than with a 50 per cent tariff, as with a prohibitive tariff, the market for imported chicken would cease to exist. Overall effects in both scenarios would still be relatively small. This is true for all household types, poor and non-poor, as well as for those living in rural and urban areas. There are however differences in the scope of gains and losses. It should be kept in mind that the proportion of households selling chicken might potentially increase in the long run with consistently higher market prices.

 

Non-poor households would suffer more from chicken import restrictions than poor households, as non-poor households in all groups tend to purchase more chicken from the market.

 

That means they depend on the price of chicken more than those households who consume a larger share of their chicken from their own production.

 

Therefore, we also express welfare effects relative to households’ total food expenditure. In both scenarios and for all groups of households, the total welfare losses would account for less than 2.3 per cent of total food expenditures. The main reason for this relatively small effect size is that chicken consumption, production and sales quantities are small for the average household in Ghana. For comparison, we also analysed the welfare effects when considering only households that consumed or produced any chicken. In such a case, the welfare effects increase in magnitude, but the direction of the effects remains unchanged. This means that at least in qualitative terms, our results may also hold if chicken consumption in Ghana continues to rise. This is also an important notion for those other African countries where the consumption of chicken meat plays a larger role than it currently does in Ghana.

 

Given the negative welfare effects of both hypothetical scenarios, additional import restrictions for chicken cannot be considered a pro-poor policy in general. Import tariffs do not seem to be an appropriate way to protect producers of chicken in Ghana from cheap imports, because only a small proportion of households are involved in production and the majority of them are net consumers who would be negatively affected. Targeted support measures, for example through technical assistance or direct income transfers, could be a better strategy. Overall, cheap chicken imports do not seem to be as harmful for poorer Ghanaian households as often claimed, and without access to alternative protein sources, cheap imported chicken products contribute to improved nutrition of income-restrained households. Furthermore, policies to strengthen local infrastructure, technologies, and institutions are better suited to promote sustainable development than import restrictions.

 

An additional question is also whether it would really make economic sense for countries in Africa to foster a commercial broiler sector for which developing international comparative advantage will be very difficult under current conditions. Fostering other agricultural sub-sectors for which African countries have stronger comparative advantages (including mostly raw and unprocessed products, like cocoa and its derivatives) would probably make more sense economically and socially.

 

Back to overview

Similar articles

(c) Nina Schroeder/World Food Programme

Policy against disasters

Interview with Thomas Loster

Insurance companies could provide protection during droughts in Africa. How exactly this could be done is what the industry is currently trying to figure out. First experiences are available. An interview with the Managing Director of the Munich Re Foundation, Thomas Loster

Read more

'It has never been more possible'

Interview with Carin Smaller (Ceres2030)

Over a period of two years, the Ceres2030 team spent researching answers to the questions of how much it will how much it will cost to realize SDG 2 and where that money should be spent most effectively. IISD Senior Advisor and Ceres2030 Co-director Carin Smaller about small farmers, machine learning and women empowerment.

Read more

„You must be multisectoral in your thinking”

Interview with Adriano Campolina (FAO)

For years, place-based approaches to development have been considered important features in development cooperation, at the BMZ and in FAO. Both organisations are aiming at advancing these approaches: an interview with Adriano Campolina from the FAO on territorial and landscape perspectives.

Read more

Is the international community still on track in the fight against hunger?

Interview with Miriam Wiemers (Welthungerhilfe)

The Global Hunger Index (GHI) 2020 shows that the world is not on track to meet the international goal of “zero hunger by 2030”. If we continue at our current speed, around 37 countries will not even have reached a low hunger level by 2030.

Read more

"Agricultural research unties the Gordian knot"

Interview with World Bank Vice President Voegele

The CGIAR agricultural research organization is systematically repositioning itself. We spoke with Juergen Voegele, Vice President for Sustainable Development at the World Bank, about progress to date - and discuss what needs to be done collectively to stop global hunger in ten years.

Read more

GFFA 2021 focussed on climate and COVID-19

A report by David Sahay (Zeitenspiegel)

110 speakers from 120 countries met virtually at the Global Forum for Food and Agriculture (GFFA) to discuss the challenges to global food supply. They asked the question: How can food systems support the health of people and the planet?

Read more

(c) GIZ

COST-BENEFIT ANALYSES FOR MORE SOIL CONSERVATION

With the help of sustainable farming methods, soils can be preserved and made fertile again. The investment required is also worthwhile from a financial perspective.

A project of GIZ

Read more

More than just a seat at the table

A contribution by Welthungerhilfe

Africa is home to the world’s youngest and fastest growing population. For many young people, agriculture could offer a job perspective. But to improve the living conditions and job prospects of young people in rural areas, political reforms and investments are desperately needed, as these people will be at the centre of agriculture and agricultural development in the future.

Read more

(c) Kate Holt / Africa Practice

Leveraging investment impacts

A contribution by Heike Baumüller, Christine Husmann, Julia Machovsky-Smid, Oliver Kirui, Justice Tambo

Any initiative whose aim is to reduce poverty in Africa should focus first on agriculture. But what kind of investment has the greatest impact? The use of scientific criteria provides some answers.

Read more

Pesticides – a blessing or a curse?

A debate between Lena Luig and Ludger Weß

What are the consequences of using synthetic pesticides in agriculture? Where do they help, where do they harm? Lena Luig, expert for the development policy organization INKOTA, and science journalist Ludger Weß discuss this controversial topic of international scope.

Read more

Frank Schultze / Agentur_ZS

Visions in agriculture

Video by Frank Schultze and Jan Rübel

At the beginning of December 2018, AGRA's board of directors met in Berlin. The "Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa" ​​panel discussed the next steps in their policy of modernizing agriculture. How to go on in the next ten years? One question - many answers from experts.

Read more

Karel Prinsloo/Arete/Rockefeller Foundation/AGRA

"Nutrition is a human right"

Interview with Joe DeVries (AGRA)

Joe DeVries is a breeder – and Vice President of AGRA (Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa). What are the chances and risks of a ’green revolution‘ in Africa? A discourse between Jan Rübel and him about productivity, needs, and paternalism.

Read more

KLAUS WOHLMANN / GIZ

Wanted: German investment in African agriculture

Interview with Stefan Liebing

Stefan Liebing is chairman of the Africa Association of German Business. The manager calls for a better structure of African farms. Jan Rübel asked him about small farmers, the opportunities for German start-ups and a new fund.

Read more

Global responsibility: Tackling hunger is the only way forward

A contribution by Lisa Hücking (WHH)

Chancellor Merkel has begun an ambitious European political programme: Striving for compromise in budget negotiations, an orderly Brexit as well as an appropriate response to the corona crisis. Unfortunately, one of her positions that she previously held is nowhere to be found: Africa's prosperity is in the interest of Europe. 

Read more

Africa's face of agriculture is female

A contribution by Beatrice Gakuba (AWAN-AFRIKA)

Africa has a huge opportunity to make agriculture its economic driver. However, the potential for this is far from being made exhaustive use of, one reason being that women face considerable difficulties in their economic activities. The organisation AWAN Afrika seeks to change this state of affairs.

Read more

A partnership to fight hunger

A contribution by GAFSP

The Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP) was launched by the G20 countries in 2010 in response to the 2008-09 food price crisis to increase both public and private investment in agriculture. An overview of the programme's approach, results and impact.

Read more

Innovations for a secure food supply

A contribution by German Agribusiness Alliance

The COVID 19 pandemic is hitting developing and emerging countries and their poorest populations particularly hard. It is important to take countermeasures at an early stage. Companies in the German agricultural sector want to make their contribution to ensuring the availability of urgently needed operating resources.

Read more

(c) Michael Bruentrup/DIE

News from the starting block: Changeover

A contribution by Michael Brüntrup (DIE)

The region of Sub-Saharan Africa is on the decisive verge of a great development boost in farming: it could skip entire generations of technological development. But how? About possible roles and potentials of digital services.

Read more

Joerg Boethling/GIZ

"The Green Revolution reaches its limits"

Interview with Stig Tanzmann (BfdW)

Stig Tanzmann is a farmer and adviser on agricultural issues at ‘Bread for the World’. Jan Rübel interviewed him about his reservations about AGRA's strategy.

Read more

Frank Schultze / Agentur_ZS

The communicator

A contribution by Jan Rübel

What do electrical engineering, telecommunications and agriculture have in common? They arouse the passion of Strive Masiyiwa: Thirty years ago, he started an electrical installation company with $75, later riding the telecommunications wave as a pioneer. Today he is committed to transforming African agriculture.

Read more

MarkIrungu /AGRA

Spiritual mortar for the young generation

A contribution by Jan Rübel

Fred Swaniker is working building a new era of leaders. And what about agriculture? ‘It needs to be more sexy!’

Read more

JOERG BOETHLING / GIZ

Continent in an uptrend

A report by Dr. Agnes Kalibata (AGRA)

Partnering for Africa’s Century: Innovation and Leadership as Drivers of Growth and Productivity in Rural Areas

Read more

Biodiversity and agriculture – rivalry or a new friendship?

A contribution by Irene Hoffmann (FAO)

In this article, the author describes what we know about interlinkages, what role agriculture has to play in the sustainable use and conservation of biodiversity, and what the necessary changes in agricultural systems might look like, both on small and large-scale farms.

Read more

Mr. Marí, what happened at the alternative summit?

An Interview with Francisco Marí (Brot für die Welt)

Brot für die Welt (Bread for the World) did not attend the UNFSS pre-summit. Instead, the organisation took part in a counter-summit that took place at the same time. A conversation with Francisco Marí about the reasons, the process - and an outlook for the future

Read more

How much do we actually waste, Mr. McFeely?

An interview with Peter McFeely (WWF)

The WWF has published a sensational study on food waste. The focus: farm-stage food waste. Peter McFeely, Global head of communications and strategic planning at WWF, explains what needs to be done.

Read more

What is wrong with our nutrition in Germany, Mr. Plagge ?

An interview with Jan Plagge (Bioland)

Vitamin-poor nutrition must become more expensive, in-vitro meat is not a panacea, and agricultural systems should be more decentralised. Bioland President Jan Plagge in an interview about the challenge of (future) world nutrition.

Read more

How Can We Feed The World in Times of Climate Change?

A Contribution by Jan Grossarth

Genetically modified bacteria become edible proteins, cows graze on pasture, and no waste is produced in an industrial circular economy. Journalist Jan Grossarth sees a silver lining for the future of world nutrition

Read more

Innovation Challenge 2021

Competition for ideas by BMZ

Out of 40 consortia that applied from all over the world, 14 were invited to present their innovative concept on agroecological approaches in the form of an online pitch and to face the questions of an international jury of experts. Find out which six semi-finalists were selected by the jury and what happens next in this article.

Read more

(c) Simon Veith

The future is rural

A contribution by "World Without Hunger"

The future is rural. Young African entrepreneurs gave their generation a vocie during the G-20 conference in Berlin. "World Without Hunger" asked six of them, how more jobs can be created in rural areas.

Read more

Nine Harvests Left until 2030: How Will the BMZ Organise Itself in the Future?

An Interview with Dirk Schattschneider (BMZ)

"One World no Hunger" (SEWOH) becomes one of the five core themes of the BMZ. Dirk Schattschneider, SEWOH Commissioner about previous approaches, future areas of action, and the political will to end hunger.

Read more

'The Doors are Open - We Farmers are Ready'

An Interview with Shamika Mone (INOFO) and Elizabeth Nsimadala (EAFF)

At the UN Food Systems Summit, farmers organizations have been represented on the international stage for the first time ever. Two representatives talk about bridging personal aspirations with the representation of regional needs and international negotiations.

Read more

Cooperation and Effective Incentives for Sustainable Land Use

A Contribution by GIZ

The second GFFA expert panel highlights the need for governance action to reverse global trends of land degradation.

Read more

GFFA for New Perspectives on the Planet’s Soils

A Contribution by Journalist Jan Ruebel

For five days, the 2022 Global Forum for Food and Agriculture (GFFA) in Berlin is all about strategies for a more sustainable land use.

Read more

Strenghtening Farmers' Rights with Soft Laws

A Contribution by Welthungerhilfe

How the UN Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests (VGGT) contribute to fairer and more secure land access.

Read more

What Needs to Change for Africa’s Youth, Ms Kah Walla?

An Interview with Kah Walla

A conversation with the activist and entrepreneur Kah Walla about what needs to change for young people in rural Africa.

Read more

How to Enhance Soil Organic Carbon – Uniting Traditional and Innovative Practices

A Contribution by GIZ

Indian farmers restore precious soil material combining traditional with innovative approaches. A case example how governance, agriculture and development cooperation can work together to combat climate change.

Read more

Digitalization: The Driving Force in the Future of Agriculture?

A Contribution by GIZ

At the ICTforAg conference in March 2022, the digital agriculture community exchanged on the challenges and opportunities associated with the next green revolution.

Read more

Our Food Systems are in Urgent Need of Crisis-Proofing: what needs to be done

An Artikel by TMG

Based on a scientific study by TMG Think Tank, the authors highlight various challenges in the fight against the hunger crisis. The findings show that climate change, conflict and covid-19 are increasing food and energy prices.

 

Read more

New UN Biodiversity Agreement

A Contribution by Rural 21

Nations adopted four goals and 23 targets for 2030 to foster biodiversity conservation and counter acceleration in the global rate of species extinction at the UN Biodiversity Conference (COP15).

Read more

"Human capital will play a pivotal role in the transformation of African economies"

A contribution by Ben Leyka

The potential the African food sector holds is still far too strongly associated with the continent’s natural resources, Ben Leyka maintains. He seeks to change this with the African Agri Council.

Read more

And a semicolon in the middle

A contribution by Jan Rübel

After a two-year break due to Corona, the doors of the International Green Week (IGW) in Berlin are opening again. From 20th to 29th January, visitors from all over the world can discover, marvel and taste the produce. But the event is not only feasting and fun. The BMZ stand asks questions about where food comes from & where it goes – and in the process becomes a crash test for many habits.

Read more

The importance of water for sustainable rural development

A contribtion by WE4F

How can the challenges related to water, rural development and climate resilient agriculture be addressed? What innovations need to be promoted? The Water and Energy for Food (WE4F) initiative presents strategies and innovations for sustainable, integrated water management in German and international cooperation.

Read more

From reaction to action

A contribtion by GIZ

A Year of Multiple Crises: Russian war against Ukraine, extreme weather events, high prices for energy and fertilizer, food crisis had severe implications for food security and agriculture globally and especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. A Transformation of the food systems is needed.

Read more

New legal initiatives towards deforestation-free supply chains as a game changer

A Contribution by Gerhard Langenberger

Regarding deforestation free supply chains, there are challenges and opportunities for smallholder farmers as well as for international forest governance. Also, responsibilities for companies and potential incentives for manufacturers to use materials from fair trade and sustainable sources need to be explored. But what does “deforestation-free” actually mean?

Read more

2022, a year of crisis – What does it mean for African trade and food security?

A Contribution by Ousmane Badiane

The Africa Agriculture Trade Monitor 2022 (AATM) was published by IFPRI and AKADEMIYA2063. The report analyses the short- and long-term trends and drivers of African agricultural trade flows, including regional policies and the role of global markets.

Read more

How the War against Ukraine Destabilizes Global Grain Markets

A Contribution by GIZ

Since early February 2022, two of the biggest grain and oilseed exporters have been at war. An overview, which countries are affected most severely by the destabilized grain markets, and what comes next.

Read more

Controversy: Do supply chains need liability rules?

Discussion about the potential supply chain law

The German government is struggling to pass a supply chain law. It is intended to address violations of human rights, social and environmental standards. What would the consequences be for business? A double interview with Veselina Vasileva from GEPA and economics professor Andreas Freytag.

Read more

5 Questions for Jann Lay: What is Corona doing to the economy?

Interview with Jann Lay (GIGA)

The Corona pandemic is hitting economies around the world very hard - but developments in African countries are quite diverse. There are different speeds, resiliences and vulnerabilities. What are the reasons for this? Apl. Prof. Jann Lay of the GIGA Institute provides answers.

Read more

Sustainable, feminist and socially just: The new Africa strategy of the BMZ

A contribution by Prof. Dr. Anna-Katharina Hornidge

In the video format "#99SecondsWith" of the German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS), Prof. Dr Anna - Katharina Hornidge talks about the new Africa-Strategy of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

Read more

Sang'alo Institute invests in farming of sunflower crop

A contribution by James Wanzala

Kenya is a large importer of vetable oils mainly from Indonesia and Malaysia - amongst them sunflower oil. Due to the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, there were supply bottlenecks and food shortages, leading to less affordable vegetable oils in Kenya. As a response to the lack of supply, the Sanga'alo Institute of Science and Technology, took that impulse, teamed up with the GIZ and established regional cultivation and refinement of sunflowers.

Read more

Farmers' organizations want to be involved in designing agricultural policy

An interview with Kolyang Palebele

Four interviews kick off the relaunch under the new name „Food4Transformation“, asking the same questions from different perspectives. "Women and young people need access to land. And they need financial support to cultivate this land." - says Kolyang Palebele, President of the Pan African Farmers Organisation (PAFO).

Read more

Agricultural policy belongs in prime time

An interview with Dr. Julia Köhn

Four interviews kick off the relaunch under the new name „Food4Transformation“, asking the same questions from different perspectives. Dr Julia Köhn, Chair of the German AgriFood Society, points out in the interview: Only if innovation and transformation are profitable in the medium term can they close the food gap in the long term.

Read more

BMZ releases video on the transformation of agricultural and food systems

A contribution by GIZ

The Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) has released a video on the transformation of agricultural and food systems. In the video, Federal Minister Svenja Schulze also speaks about the urgent need to combat global hunger and contribute to resilient agricultural and food systems.

Read more

“More of the same is not enough - we need to rethink”

An interview with Dirk Meyer

Four interviews kick off the relaunch under the new name „Food4Transformation“, asking the same questions from different perspectives. Dirk Meyer, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, thinks: less individual solutions are needed, but more systemic approaches. Because in addition to the goals for food security, the issues of climate and biodiversity must also be taken into account.

Read more

Unlocking the potential of agrivoltaics

A contribution by Fraunhofer Institute

Agrivoltaics is a concept that combines photovoltaic electricity generation and agricultural production, providing the opportunity for a more efficient land use and contributing overall to the integration of food, energy and water systems. This can be particularly interesting for countries in the Global South, where rural electrification rates are often low and food security needs to be improved.

Read more

Partners for change - Network meeting on transforming agricultural and food systems

A Contribution by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development

At the network meeting "Partners for change - Transformation to a food secure, resilient and sustainable future", almost 250 participants from over 20 countries came together to exchange experiences and ideas on the transformation of agricultural and food systems. The final product, joint recommendations to transform agricultural and food systems, can now be read online.

Read more

Just change starts with listening

A Contribution by Jan Rübel

Halfway through the 2030 Agenda, the BMZ invited participants to a network meeting entitled "Partners for change - Transformation to a food secure, resilient and sustainable future". Experts from around the world developed recommendations in a consultation process and then consolidated them in Berlin. A site visit.

Read more

What is needed for a long-term fertiliser strategy?

A contribution by Michael Brüntrup

The world is currently experiencing a historic food crisis. High fertiliser prices are part of the problem. In addition to the necessary short-term aid measures, the crisis ought to be made use of to develop and implement longer-term fertiliser strategies for sustainable, in particular smallholder increases in production in the Global South.

Read more

Think20 Policy Brief centres on Agroecology

Insights from the T20 Policy Brief

Given the urgency of transforming agricultural and food systems, GIZ India's Food Systems and Agroecology Working Group is exploring the potential of agroecology in collaboration with Think20 partners. A policy brief has now been published.

Read more

© GIZ

Ideas on the ground: Local solutions for global challenges

Interview with Sebastian Lesch (BMZ)

A world without hunger and with sufficient healthy food as well as climate-friendly agriculture can only be achieved if ideas are transformed into innovations and ultimately also applied - a conversation with BMZ Head of Division Sebastian Lesch on the Innovation Challenge programme of the new Agricultural Innovation Fund.

Read more

“Corona exposes the weaknesses of our nutritional systems"

Interview with Arif Husain (WFP)

The United Nations plan a Food Systems Summit - and now the Corona-Virus is dictating the agenda. The Chief Economist of the UN World Food Programme takes stock of the current situation: a conversation with Jan Rübel about pandemics, about the chromosomes of development - and about the conflicts that inhibit them.

Read more

(c) Christoph Püschner

The price isn’t everything

By Bettina Rühl

In Togo’s capital, Lomé, home-grown rice costs almost twice as much as the imported product from Thailand. Yet there are good reasons for preferring the local product

Read more

(c) Christoph Püschner/Zeitenspiegel

Slaves do not produce quality

By Tilman Wörtz

Every child in Germany knows Ritter Sport – but most of the children harvesting cocoa on western African plantations have never even eaten chocolate. Can a chocolate manufacturer change the world? Conversation with Alfred Ritter about the power and powerlessness of a businessman.

Read more

(c) Simon Veith

The Big Bang is possible

Interview with Joachim von Braun

Happy youngsters in rural areas, green development and the connection to the digital age – professor Joachim von Braun believes in this future sceneraio for Africa. For three decades the agricultural scienties has been researching how politics can create prosperty on the continent. 

Read more

(c) Simon Veith

A fresh opportunity

Interview with Lutz Hartmann

By leasing a three hundred hectare fruit plantation in Ethiopia, Lutz Hartmann has realised a long-cherished dream: to run his own business in Africa. Now he has a personal interest in the issue of Africa’s development.

Read more

Ebay Against Hunger - How an App Supports Crop Sale of Rural Small Holders in Zambia

Small holders around the world are often forced to sell their harvests below market value due to a lack of market and pricing information. A new app by the UN World Food Programme (WFP) is going to change this.

A project of WFP

Read more

(c) Foto Privat

Story: In Blocked Chains We Trust

A contribution by Solomon King Benge

It is 2080. We are on a farm somewhere in Africa. Everything is digital. The blockchain is an omnipotent point of reference, and the farm is flourishing. But then, everything goes wrong. A dystopian short story, written exclusively for SEWOH.

Read more

Small fish with a big potential

A contribution by Paul van Zwieten

African inland fisheries are increasingly reliant on the capture of small fish species that are sundried and traded over long distances. They make an important contribution in alleviating “hidden hunger”: consumed whole, small fish are an important source of micronutrients. Only that, unfortunately, politicians haven’t yet realised this.

Read more

Reference values: A building block on the road to social equality

A contribution by Friederieke Martin (GIZ)

A quick and cost-effective method calculates living wages and incomes for many different countries. The GIZ together with Fairtrade International and Richard and Martha Anker have developed a tool that companies can use to easily analyse income and wage gaps.

Read more

Quinoa could have a huge potential in Central Asia, where the Aral Sea Basin has been especially hard-hit by salinisation.

Supermarket Scorecard on Human Rights

A contribution by Dr. Franziska Humbert (Oxfam)

Oxfam’s supermarket scorecard, which is in its third year, shows one thing in particular - it works! Supermarkets can change their business policies and focus more on the rights of those people around the world who plant and harvest food. However, this does not happen without pressure. 

Read more

Do we have to dare a new food system?

A contribution by Dr. Felix zu Löwenstein (BÖLW)

Lack of seasonal workers and virus explosion in slaughterhouses, rising vegetable prices, climate crisis – all this demonstrates: Our food system is highly productive and (at least for the rich inhabitants of planet earth) guarantees an unprecedented rich and steady food supply - but it is not resilient.

Read more

Ms Rudloff, what are the benefits of a supply chain law?

By Jan Rübel

The Federal Government is fine-tuning a law that would require companies to ensure human rights – a supply chain law. What are the consequences for the agricultural sector? Dr Bettina Rudloff from the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) discusses linking policy fields with added value.

Read more

Uli Reinhardt/Zeitenspiegel

Bitter fruit

A contribution by Frank Brunner

Why aren’t bars of chocolate made where cocoa is grown? Author Frank Brunner analyses the industry’s fragile value chain from the plantation to the supermarket

Read more

"Soy can be made into more than just flour"

A report by Johanna Steinkühler (GIZ)

The soybean is a natural crop that can be used to make a lot of food. So, Tata Bi started a small processing business first on her own, then with a few other women, which provides the women with an additional source of income year-round besides selling the soybeans.

Read more

Freed from trade? Towards a fairer EU Trade Agenda

A contribution by Dr. Jan Orbie (University Gent)

‘Fair’ and ‘sustainable’ are key words in Germany’s EU Council Presidency. At the same time, Germany pursues ‘modernization’ of the WTO and ‘rapid progress’ on free trade agreements. Are these goals really compatible? Can we be concerned about fairness and sustainability while continuing with ‘business as usual’?

Read more

Good health is impossible without healthy food

A contribution by Heino von Meyer

Corona makes it even more difficult to achieve a world without hunger by 2030. So that this perspective does not get out of sight, Germany must play a stronger role internationally - a summary of the Strategic Advisory Group of SEWOH.

Read more

Hier steht eine Bildbeschreibung

Statement from GAFSP Co-Chairs: GAFSP and COVID-19 Pandemic

A contribution by GAFSP

COVID-19 has unprecedented effects on the world. As always, the most vulnerable are the hardest hit, both at home and - especially - abroad. A joint appeal by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Development and Cooperation (BMZ) and the Department for International Development (DFID).

Read more

(c) Privat

The 'Grey Gold'

A contribution by Maria Schmidt (GIZ)

The Cashew Council is the first international organisation for a raw material stemming from Africa. The industry promises to make progress in processing and refining cashew nuts - and answers to climate change

Read more

“They said: You can do it”

A contribution by Bread for the World

As President of the IABM cooperative in Muhanga, Alphonsine Mukankusi is not simply focused on the figures. She has learned how to deal with people and how to take on responsibility. At the same time, her work helps her to come to terms with the past

 

Read more

No rainforest for our consumption

A contribution by Jenny Walther-Thoß (WWF)

In the tropics rainforests are still being felled for the production of palm oil, meat and furniture. It is high time to act. Proposals are on the table.

Read more

(c) Privat

Small Farms, big money

A contribution by Agnes Kalibata

Agnes Kalibata, AGRA president since 2014 and former minister of agriculture and wildlife in Rwanda, is convinced that Africa's economy will only grow sustainably if small-scale agriculture is also seen as an opportunity.

Read more

(c) GIZ

Sustainable Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture in Rural Areas

Fish is important for combating malnutrition and undernourishment. But it is not only notable for its nutritional value, but also secures the livelihoods and employment for 600 million people worldwide.

A Project of GIZ

Read more

The Future of Development Politics: Voices from the Parliamentary Groups

A Contribution by Journalist Jan Rübel

Representatives of the six parliamentary groups offer their views on the future of German development cooperation.

Read more

Côte d’Ivoire: The Future Starts With Food

A Contribution by GIZ

How nutrition trainer Edwige helps cocoa farmers in Côte d’Ivoire to prepare for a healthier future.

Read more

Five tips to reduce food waste

A listicle against food waste

Whether it's banana bread made from brown bananas, conscious shopping plans or foodsharing, we give you five tips on how to reduce your everyday food waste.

Read more

The Case for Fair Fashion

A Contribution by Jan Rübel

On the podcast ‘From the Field to the Shelf’, Marie Nasemann calls for new attempts to promote fair fashion. An evening about burnt returns, filterless washing machines and a lot of room for improvement.

Read more

Knowledge about spice production

A listicle regarding spice production

The global trade in spices currently has a volume of over 10 billion euros. But at what price do these spices refine our Christmas cuisine? On closer inspection, aspects of the value chain leave a bitter taste.

Read more

Achieving more together – New forms of cooperation for sustainability in the cotton sector

A Contribution by Saskia Widenhorn

Saskia Widenhorn, Head of the Cotton Component in Cameroon and the Sub-Saharan Cotton Initiative at GIZ, reports on the Bremer Cotton Week, which brought together international industry experts. The agenda included supply chain transparency, sustainability and new forms of cooperation between the private sector and partner countries.

 

Read more

David versus Goliath: Consequences of mainstream agricultural export commodities and niche products

An Artikel by the Initiative for Sustainable Agricultural Supply Chains (INA)

A study published by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) examines the differences between globally traded agricultural commodities and domestic niche products in terms of economic, environmental and social impact on the region of origin. The results provide new evidence to make supply chains more sustainable.  

Read more

Côte d’Ivoire: Sweet Temptation without a Bitter Taste

A Story by GIZ

Until Easter 2022, GIZ publishes a new episode every fortnight introducing people who are committed to fair and sustainable cocoa in Côte d'Ivoire and Germany.

Read more

Fair Trade and Climate Justice: Everything is Conntected

A Contribution of the 'Initiative for Sustainable Agricultural Supply Chains' (INA)

Fair Trade organisations and the Initiative for Sustainable Agricultural Supply Chains (INA) have launched the #ichwillfair campaign during COP26 to highlight the link between global supply chains and climate change.

Read more

The Rice Sector in West Africa: A Political Challenge

New insights on trade and value addition in the rice sector in West Africa

Low import tariffs, smuggling activities, unpredictable tax exemptions and weak enforcement of food safety standards: The potential of local rice value chains is undermined in West African countries.

Read more

The fight against illegal fishing

A Report

The oceans are important for our food supply, but they are overfished. To halt this trend the global community is now taking action against illegal fishing. Journalist Jan Rübel spoke with Francesco Marí, a specialist for world food, agricultural trade and maritime policy at "Brot für die Welt," and others.

Read more

From field to fan shop: how to increase supply

A contribution by Jan Rübel

Organic cotton is extremely popular – but farmers still find it difficult to change their conventional cultivation methods. A new project addresses this dilemma: Bundesliga football teams in Germany are promoting the switch to organic cotton in India. And thereby setting an example.

Read more

The Agri-Food Map: An interactive map to explore sustainable agri-food systems

A Contribution by GIZ

The complex interrelationships of the sustainable transformation of agricultural and food systems are not always easy to understand - the Agri-Food Map, an interactive online app, makes the comprehensive relations accessible by providing a wide range of comprehensibly prepared information.

Read more

Strengthening the market linkages of smallholders in the face of global supply shocks

A Contribution by Niladri Sekhar Bagchi

The consequences of the Russian invasion of Ukraine have enabled many countries to open up new export markets for their agricultural goods. However, smallholder farms have been largely left out. Drawing on his experience in India, our author gives a brief overview of how this can be changed.

Read more

The Principle of Sharing

A contribution by gebana

gebana, a Swiss fair trade company, follows the principle of "sharing" with its corporate philosophy: farming families in the Global South participate directly in the sales of their online shop. Caroline Schaar, Marketing at gebana, explains the company's approach.

Read more

Coconuts, Digitalization and the Future

An Interview with Ebun Feludu

Female founder Ebun Feludu wants to bring the coconut value chain to Nigeria with her start-up Kokari. In this interview, she explains why she envisions every coconut palm tree bearing its own name in the future and how digitalization can contribute to this.

Read more

Nature conservation around the world

A Contribution by WWF

From measures to promote biodiversity in Germany to more sustainable cocoa cultivation methods in Ecuador: WWF works at many different levels. At the Green Week, it will be demonstrated just how multifaceted nature conservation work is and what role each individual's decision plays.

Read more

From Coexistence to Collaboration

A Contribution by Initiative für nachhaltige Agrarlieferketten (INA)

The demand for sustainable products and supply chains is constantly increasing. DIASCA is an alliance that works on interoperability of digital solutions in agricultural supply chains through the development of open standards for forest monitoring, farm income and traceability.  

Read more

The Idea of Coffee entirely made by Women

A Conversation with Allan Mubiru

Allan Mubiru was standing in front of a shelf in Kigali, Rwanda, and discovered a local type of coffee. He took it, tasted it and was thrilled. A story about a grocery shopping trip that became the beginning of a successful business idea.

Read more

KLAUS WOHLMANN / GIZ

"Farmers are smart"

Interview with Maria Andrade

From the lab to the masses: Maria Andrade bred varieties of biofortified sweet potatoes which are now widely used all over the continent. She sets her hope on the transformation of African agriculture.

Read more

© GIZ

One Health – What we are learning from the Corona crisis

A contribution by Dr. May Hokan and Dr. Arnulf Köhncke (WWF)

Due to the coronavirus crisis, the connection between human and animal health has gained new attention. Politicians and scientists are joining forces to propagate the solution: One Health. But what is behind the concept? And can it also guarantee food security for all people worldwide?

Read more

The state of food security in Cape Town and St. Helena Bay

A study by Markus Hanisch, Agustina Malvido, Johanna Hansmann, Alexander Mewes, Moritz Reigl, Nicole Paganini (SLE)

Post-Covid-19 lockdown: How food governance processes could include marginalised communities - an extract of the results of an SLE study applying digital and participatory methods.

Read more

School Feeding: A unique platform to address gender inequalities

A contribution by Carmen Burbano de Lara (WFP)

Besides the well known impacts of Covid19 lockdowns for the adult population, the associated school closures led to 90 percent of the world’s children with no access to schools. However, school meals are in often the only daily meal for children. Without access to this safety net, issues like hunger, poverty and malnutrition are exacerbated for hundreds of millions of children.

Read more

(c) Privat

Borderless food security

A contribution by Christine Wieck

Enabling smallholders to trade across regions and borders promotes food security and economic growth. Although everyone is calling for exactly that, implementation is still difficult

Read more

How do you campaign “Food Systems”?

Interview with Paul Newnham, Director of the SDG 2 Advocacy Hub.

The UN Food Systems pre-Summit in Rome dealt with transforming the ways of our nutrition. How do you bring that to a broad public? Questions to Paul Newnham, the Director of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 Advocacy Hub.

Read more

African Nutrition - 'Try It at Home'!

A Video Series by Agribusiness TV and GIZ

Share in the taste of African Nutrition – Try it at home! The mini-series showcases traditional, nutritious dishes across the African continent.

Read more

Diversity Is the Fundamental Principle to Use

An Interview with Shakuntala Thilsted

A conversation with aquatic researcher Shakuntala Thilsted on the long-neglected nutrition benefits of aquatic diets and the empowering qualities of a sustainable aqua-food systems transformation.

Read more

Food security is more than production volumes and high yields

A Contribution by Adrian Muller, Catherine Pfeifer and Jürn Sanders (FiBL)

Taking Biodiversity Focus Areas under production or abandoning lower yielding, more extensive production systems is the wrong approach to mastering the looming global food crisis, say the authors of the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL).

Read more

Felix Phiri and two decades of Agriculture

A Conversation with Felix Phiri

Felix Phiri has been Head of the Department of Nutrition, HIV and AIDS at the Ministry of Health in Malawi for almost 20 years. A conversation about constants and change.

Read more