Value chains for nutrition

The objective of this paper is to identify if, why, and how value-chain concepts could and should be applied to enhance the ability of agriculture to leverage better nutrition. Specifically it aims to

  1. provide background information for the nutrition community about value-chain concepts, approaches and uses in practice;
  2. discuss why the adoption of value-chain concepts could contribute to improving nutrition (including their potential benefits and limitations);
  3. begin to develop some principles and frameworks concerning how value-chain approaches could be used as a tool to improve nutrition; and
  4. identify core opportunities for levering agriculture for better nutrition.

The paper is written from the perspective of nutrition, with the focus on increasing the supply and demand of foods that are rich in essential micronutrients such as fruit and vegetables, meat, fish and dairy products, and biofortified staple foods by the poor. Improving this supply and demand is essential to solving malnutrition in all its forms (for a more obesity-oriented approach, see Hawkes 2009). Food value chains can also be examined from the perspective of food safety and health (Trench et al. 2011).

Hawkes, Corinna
Ruel, Marie
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International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
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