Screencast: Improving Food Security through Customized Loan Products in India

  • Date Posted: October 7, 2011
  • Authors: Ashleigh Mullinax
  • Organizations/Projects: SEEP Network
  • Document Types: Other
  • Donor Type: U.S. Agency for International Development

As part of the Rural Agricultural Finance and Food Security (RAFFS) Practitioner Learning Program (PLP), the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme-India (AKRSPI) examined the impact of customized loan products for animal husbandry activities on the food security of rural clients in marginalized communities. In 2003, AKRSPI began working in vulnerable communities to provide clients with financing options to improve their livelihoods. In 2007, AKRSPI began implementing a new rural finance product that included customized support services for improved dairy production in addition to traditional financing.

Through the RAFFS PLP, AKRSPI examined the impact of their rural finance products on the food security of their clients.  From February to June 2010, AKRSPI gathered data from clients to analyze changes in:

  1. Household income.
  2. Household expenditures on typical food and non-food items.
  3. Frequency of purchase of key food items.
  4. Frequency of consumption of key food items before and after program intervention.

Results from the study indicate that rural clients experienced the greatest positive food security changes after utilizing AKRSPI’s finance product that also provided customized support services, as shown in this screencast.

About RAFFS: In 2010, the number of undernourished people worldwide topped 925 million. Among the many factors responsible for this figure are high domestic food prices, lower household incomes, and increasing unemployment, all of which have significantly reduced access to food for the poor. Research has shown that a healthy agricultural sector can provide an economic buffer during financial crises. In addition, financial services responding to the food security needs of rural households can lead to more successful outreach and have a greater impact on the poor.

The Rural Agriculture Finance and Food Security Practitioner Learning Program (RAFFS) is an action-learning project focused on approaches to and connections between rural and agricultural finance and household well-being, including food security. The envisioned impact is that rural households and enterprises will have increasing finance options that serve their needs and contribute to a vibrant rural economy both on and off the farm.