The Emergence of Contract Agriculture in Algeria
Over the past few decades, different types of contract arrangements between farmers and food processors have become popular. This project will explore the effects of contract agriculture on small- and medium-sized farmers in Algeria. Growth of contract agriculture in Algeria Historically, contract agriculture was not common in Algeria. There has been an increase in recent years, however. Contract farming is growing, specifically in the dairy, tomato, and field crop (such as wheat) sectors. This has major implications for Algerian farmers because more than 80% of them hold less than 10 hectares of land. Contract agriculture: risks and rewards Analyses of similar agriculture contracts in the social sciences literature have been divided on whether the impacts are positive or negative for smallholders. Some studies show improvements in income, but others note shifts in power relations that result in reduced socio-economic outcomes for smallholders. The project proposes to examine the risks and rewards for Algerian farmers and food processors to participate in these contracts. The research team will also analyze how public-private partnerships might cement the role of government to protect smaller farmers and promote private sector growth. Methodology and approach Researchers will conduct case study analyses in several Algerian value chains and a think tank to examine the role of government will also be created as part of the project. Improving knowledge and policy-making Project outputs will include several student theses on various aspects of contract farming in Algeria. These will improve understanding of contract farming in the country. The project will also produce policy recommendations relating to how government can best support the emerging contract farming sector. Finally, it will improve understanding of the drivers that encourage adoption of contract farming, as well as the implications for agricultural sustainability.