Stream B - Inclusive Markets & Value Chains
19 May 2021
Virtual | East Africa Time (GMT+3)
13:30 - 15:00
Agricultural commercialization is widely pursued by may countries because it has been associated with significant poverty reduction and livelihood improvement across the globe. Rice commercialization is therefore promoted and supported for similar reasons. However, not everybody benefits from commercialisation processes due to resource constraints and power relations within families and communities. Some of the negative effects of agricultural commercialisation have included marginalization in land ownership, increasing food insecurity, increasing gender inequality among others. For this reason, it is imperative that agricultural commercialisation processes should be managed through policy and institutional instruments. This presentation mainly draws from data collected at study sites in Tanzania and Ethiopia under the Agricultural Policy Research Programme (APRA). The purpose of the studies was to assess the level of rice commercialisation attained by different categories of farmers and the impact of such commercialisation on their livelihoods, measured by different indicators, including the MPI, food security and women’s empowerment. The presentation examines the levels of rice commercialisation in light of prevailing policies, levels of input use, investment in private and public goods as well as other institutional factors.
About the presenter
15:00 - 16:30
In this presentation, we examine the role of rice processors as key actors in rice sector development in East Africa, based on primary data generated from surveys and key informant interviews in Ethiopia and Tanzania in 2018. We specifically characterise rice processors in terms of (i) socio-demographics, technological ownership, commercial behaviour and its implication for rice production, (ii) the role they play in rice marketing (both paddy and milled rice), and (iii) the main challenges the rice processors face in establishing and growing their operations along with ensuring the competitiveness of domestic rice with imported rice. The results indicate that if the rice sector is to contribute better at country and regional level, the multifaceted challenges facing the rice processing industry need to be addressed, specifically there is a need: (i) to modernise and build the capacity of rice processors to ensure the competitiveness of domestic rice with imported rice; (ii) to standardise the key requirements for licensing a rice processing facility and incentivise processors for improved technological investment; (iii) concerted public support in enhancing the transfer and adaption of rice technologies and their management practices along with ensuring alignment of the efforts of development partners, (iv) to design incentive mechanism for quality paddy rice production by farmers and quality milled rice production by processors, and (v) the public sector like Ministries of Agriculture to adapt and promote an improved paddy and milled rice marketing system.
About the presenter
Dr. Dawit Alemu is an agricultural economist currently serving as Manager for the Bilateral Ethio-Netherlands Effort for Food, Income and Trade (BENEFIT) partnership program in Ethiopia and engaged with Future Agricultures Consortium (FAC) of Institute of Development Studies, UK as member and country lead of APRA. He has served as chairperson of the Ethiopian National Rice R&D taskforce for about 8 years and currently serves as a resource person for the taskforce. As former senior researcher and Director of the Agricultural Economics, Extension and Gender Research Directorate of the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research (EIAR), he has extensive publications.
Rice was grown and processed in East Africa in relatively small quantities as it was majorly imported, and eaten mainly by urbanites. The surge to grow the industry locally came around 2002 when EAC countries saw a huge influx of rice imports in late 1990's. The Governments reacted by imposing a Common External Tariff (CET) that raised the price of imported rice to the extent that it local rice prices soared thereby encouraging farmer to invest in production. Support by donors, research scientists and extension staff led to further increases in local production. Investments in modern milling machines by private sectors made the local rice quality compete favorably with imports.Since then the Industry has grown exponentially.
About the presenter