Dominants Et Dominés En Économie De Plantation Dans Le Centre-Est De La Côte D'Ivoire. Le Cas Des Producteurs De Tomates (1990-2000)
In Ivory Coast, the cash crop sector is going through a crisis. At the same time the urban growth increases the demand for food crops. Tomato production and sale to urban markets is expanding in the Centre-East of Ivory Coast. This paper appraises whether the incomes generated by tomato enable the social and economic autonomy of farmers who are traditionally marginalised in favour of the owners of plantations. In-depth interviews as well as surveys on a representative sample of farmers were used to get information on the history of the farm, access to resources and markets, the activities performed, and the economic results. The place of origin together with the way farmers are socially integrated in the village bear a strong influence on their access to land, labour and market. The natives, i.e. the people who were born in the villages they live in, as well as the immigrants from Ivory Coast or neighbouring countries, who have been living in the village for a long time, use their network of relationships to gain access to land. They are ready to invest time and money in the growing of tomato. The development of tomato production has taken place together with a change in the access to land and labour, which exemplify more diversified types, but is more precarious. Social arrangements inherited from the economy of plantation have adapted to the growing demand for land and to the expanding food cash crops. The development of tomato is thus taking place in the frame of the power relations of the economy of plantation despite some changes in the access to land and labour.
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