A knowledge-based farming system and enhanced capacity of small-scale producers to penetrate into regional and global value chains are needed to meet the needs of rural communities in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS). The economic development dynamic in this subregion has shifted from independent smallholder families producing rice and other agri-food products to meet household food security needs, with small surpluses being marketed locally; to production by farmer organizations often engaged in contract farming with local small- and medium-scale (SME) agro-enterprises linked to domestic and regional markets and global value chains. A new set of socioeconomic and agro-ecological factors has emerged that requires innovative solutions; solutions different from those used in the past. MI Agricultural Development & Commercialization (ADC) aims to provide development practitioners, government officials, leaders of farmer cooperatives, production clusters, and local SMEs with the knowledge and skills to implement approaches to rural development that are required by the emerging challenges of the 21st Century.
The ultimate goal of ADC department is to improve agriculture productivity by (i) moving farmers from subsistence to commercial farming (e.g., introducing Good Agricultural Practices and diversification to raise incomes and reduce risks); (ii) promoting rural non-farm employment (e.g., by promoting value-adding agriculture processing activities and the development of SMEs in rural areas); (iii) integrating small-scale producers and agriculture based SMEs to regional and global value chains.
1. A series of improved agriculture productivity training program, including
- Promoting Good Agricultural Practices
- Public - Private and Community Partnership in agriculture sector (PPCP)
- Promoting cross-border and regional agriculture value chains
- Standardization and harmonization of agriculture curricula in the GMS
- Agriculture policy restructuring and reform
2. Subregional researches and field studies
- Cross-border contract farming and benefit derived by smallholder farmers
- Agriculture value chains on the GMS Economic Corridors
- Research on GAP implementation in CLMV
- Supporting farmer to move from subsistence to modernized, commercial farming by introducing Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) and effective post-harvest systems;
- Promoting value added in agricultural production and processing by supporting:
- Small-scale farmers and SME to integrate into regional and global value chains;
- Efforts to strengthen cross-border and regional agriculture value chains, especially in the GMS Economic Corridors and,
- Fair contract farming practices across borders
- Promoting rural off-farm (e.g. value-adding agriculture processing activities and agri-food SME in rural areas);
- Facilitating public, private and community partnerships in the agriculture sector;
- Contributing agriculture policy development and restructuring, including the harmonization of agricultural standards and agriculture curricula, and other relevant reform efforts in the GMS countries; and,
- Conducting research and field studies on subjects such as the benefits of smallholder border farmer integration into cross border contract farming and regional value chains.