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Pranav Prashad - Agricultural Microinsurance

There is a clear need for better risk management for small scale farmers, yet the demand for microinsurance from clients is not necessarily there. Pranav Prashad discusses the challenges of delivering agricultural microinsurance.

Lessons Learned From 25 Years of Food Security Research, Capacity-Building, and Outreach

This resource provides a coherent and helpful summary of the Michigan State University (MSU)’s Food Security Group’s research, primarily from Sub-Saharan Africa. Lessons are presented in four areas: The first, Agricultural Growth and Food Security Strategies, suggests that small shrinking farm sizes in many countries will prevent many farmers from escaping poverty from on-farm production alone. Investments in education and non-agricultural sectors will be important.

Food Aid and Food Security in the Short and Long Run: Country Experience from Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa

This document, produced under a primer series on social safety nets, assesses the role of food aid in improving food availability and food access. It is based on a synthesis of experiences in four countries:  India, Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Zambia. It concludes that food aid does not have to create negative impacts, particularly if it is tied to the development of infrastructure that supports production and market linkages, avoids creating negative price effects for food producers, and reaches the food insecure.

Gender: A Key Dimension Linking Agricultural Programs to Improved Nutrition and Health

This short brief finds that gender is a critical factor shaping the impact of agricultural programming on food security and health. The paper suggests that positive impacts are more likely when the agricultural intervention enhances women's control over assets and includes nutrition education to ensure better use of additional food or income.  The brief presents three agricultural development strategies in terms of their gender impacts — household food production, linking smallholders to markets, and large-scale agriculture — and recommends ways to ensure that each of these strate

Market-based approaches to nutrition improvement and food security and linkages to agriculture: TechnoServe’s Evolving Strategy

This presentation by TechnoServe presents the organization's strategy for improving nutrition through its work with the private sector. Five strategies are outlined: nutritional reviews, food fortification, commercialization of nutritious food, crop diversification, and encouraging embedded nutritional services by value chain actors. The presentation briefly examples two examples of how this strategy could be applied.

Smallholder Commercialization: Processes, Determinants and Impact

This paper by the International Livestock Research Institute reviews the available literature on smallholder commercialization. Of particular interest, the paper discusses the arguments for smallholders to scale-up and commercialize existing food crops versus beginning to produce completely new crops specifically for sale. The production of high-value crops typically generates greater returns for producers, but also typically implies greater risks and barriers to entry. In general, commercialization is found to be positive for families, though the impacts vary.

Enhancing Nutritional Value and Marketability of Beans through Research and Strengthening Key Value-Chain Stakeholders in Uganda

This short note presents the approach being used by the Dry Grain Pulse Collaborative Research Support Program in Uganda to improve nutritional outcomes through the development of the bean value chain.  The initiative explicitly applies a sustainable livelihoods framework and related tools, including through its emphasis on using participatory methodologies.  In the context of minimal commercialization and low productivity of the bean crop, despite its high micronutrient content, the project works to address multiple overlapping value chain constraints.  The note describes so