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Can Small Farmers Survive, Prosper, or be the Key Channel to Cut Mass Poverty?

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  • Michael Lipton

    () (Poverty Research Unit, University of Sussex, UK)

Abstract

The paper reviews the role of small farms in development and poverty reduction in countries (or regions within a country) with persistent mass poverty. It discusses the arguments supporting the importance of agricultural development for poverty and argues that initial success in reduction of mass poverty requires prior agricultural developments. It explores in particular the role of smallscale farming and policy requirements to ensure the competitive advantage of small farms.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Lipton, 2006. "Can Small Farmers Survive, Prosper, or be the Key Channel to Cut Mass Poverty?," The Electronic Journal of Agricultural and Development Economics, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, vol. 3(1), pages 58-85.
  • Handle: RePEc:fao:tejade:v:3:y:2006:i:1:p:58-85
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. JunJie Wu, 2000. "Slippage Effects of the Conservation Reserve Program," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(4), pages 979-992.
    2. Gerard Wynn & Bob Crabtree & Jacqueline Potts, 2001. "Modelling Farmer Entry into the Environmentally Sensitive Area Schemes in Scotland," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(1), pages 65-82.
    3. Masayuki Kashiwagi, 2004. "Direct payment policies for the regeneration of less-favoured areas: a comparative study of the EU and Japan," International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 3(3/4), pages 193-215.
    4. Pagiola, Stefano & Arcenas, Agustin & Platais, Gunars, 2005. "Can Payments for Environmental Services Help Reduce Poverty? An Exploration of the Issues and the Evidence to Date from Latin America," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 237-253, February.
    5. Katherine Falconer & Pierre Dupraz & Martin Whitby, 2001. "An Investigation of Policy Administrative Costs Using Panel Data for the English Environmentally Sensitive Areas," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(1), pages 83-103.
    6. Arild Vatn, 2002. "Multifunctional agriculture: some consequences for international trade regimes," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 29(3), pages 309-327, July.
    7. Oscar J. Cacho & Graham R. Marshall & Mary Milne, 2003. "Smallholder Agroforestry Projects: Potential for carbon sequestration and poverty alleviation," Working Papers 03-06, Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO - ESA).
    8. Wanhong Yang & Madhu Khanna & Richard Farnsworth & Hayri Önal, 2005. "Is Geographical Targeting Cost-Effective? The Case of the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program in Illinois," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 27(1), pages 70-88.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Huanxiu Guo & Sébastien Marchand, 2013. "Is participatory social learning a performance driver for Chinese smallholder farmers?," Working Papers halshs-00878886, HAL.
    2. Mellor, John W. & Malik, Sohail J., 2017. "The Impact of Growth in Small Commercial Farm Productivity on Rural Poverty Reduction," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 1-10.
    3. Abay, Kibrewossen & Hirvonen, Kalle & Minten, Bart, 2017. "Farm size, food security, and welfare: Descriptive evidence from the Ethiopian highlands," ESSP working papers 111, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    4. Donald F. Larson & Keijiro Otsuka & Tomoya Matsumoto & Talip Kilic, 2014. "Should African rural development strategies depend on smallholder farms? An exploration of the inverse-productivity hypothesis," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 45(3), pages 355-367, May.
    5. Sitko, Nicholas J. & Jayne, T.S., 2014. "Structural transformation or elite land capture? The growth of “emergent” farmers in Zambia," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 194-202.
    6. Hichaambwa, Munguzwe & Jayne, T. S., 2014. "Poverty Reduction Potential of Increasing Smallholder Access to Land," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 171873, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    7. Saravia-Matus, Silvia L. & Gomez y Paloma, Sergio & Mary, Sebastien, 2012. "Economics of Food Security: Selected Issues," Bio-based and Applied Economics Journal, Italian Association of Agricultural and Applied Economics (AIEAA), issue 1, April.
    8. Lemeilleur, Sylvaine & Codron, Jean-Marie, 2011. "Marketing cooperative vs. commission agent: The Turkish dilemma on the modern fresh fruit and vegetable market," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 272-279, April.
    9. Jayne, T.S. & Mason, Nicole M. & Burke, William J. & Ariga, Joshua, 2016. "Agricultural Input Subsidy Programs in Africa: An Assessment of Recent Evidence," Food Security International Development Working Papers 245892, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    10. Raghav Gaiha, & Ganesh Thapa, 2007. "Supermarkets, Smallholders and Livelihoods Prospects in Selected Asian Countries," ASARC Working Papers 2007-12, The Australian National University, Australia South Asia Research Centre.
    11. Larson,Donald F. & Muraoka,Rie & Otsuka,Keijiro, 2016. "On the central role of small farms in African rural development strategies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7710, The World Bank.
    12. Chamberlin, Jordan, 2008. "It's a small world after all: Defining smallholder agriculture in Ghana," IFPRI discussion papers 823, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    13. Jayne, T.S. & Chamberlin, Jordan & Headey, Derek D., 2014. "Land pressures, the evolution of farming systems, and development strategies in Africa: A synthesis," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 1-17.
    14. repec:spr:ssefpa:v:9:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s12571-017-0700-4 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Poverty; agriculture; agricultural development; small-scale farming.;

    JEL classification:

    • Q10 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - General
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General

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