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The quiet revolution in agrifood value chains in Asia: The case of increasing quality in rice markets in Bangladesh


  • Minten, Bart
  • Murshid, K.A.S.
  • Reardon, Thomas


In Bangladesh—one of the poorest countries in Asia, where rice accounts for almost 70 percent of consumers' caloric intake—the share of the less expensive, low-quality coarse rice is shown to be rapidly decreasing in rice markets and the quality premium for the best-quality rice has been consistently on the rise in the last decades. It thus seems that the role of rice as only a cheap staple food is being redefined. The off-farm share in the final consumer price increases from 27 percent to 35 percent to 48 percent for low-, medium-, and high-quality rice, respectively, and the increasing demand for higher quality is thus seemingly associated with a more important off-farm food sector—in particular, milling, retailing, and branding—as well as a transformed milling industry. We further find that the labor rewards for and the technical efficiency of growing different rice qualities are not significantly different, and farmers do not benefit directly from consumers' increased willingness to pay for higher rice quality.

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  • Minten, Bart & Murshid, K.A.S. & Reardon, Thomas, 2011. "The quiet revolution in agrifood value chains in Asia: The case of increasing quality in rice markets in Bangladesh," IFPRI discussion papers 1141, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:ifprid:1141

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Rahman, Sanzidur, 2003. "Profit efficiency among Bangladeshi rice farmers," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(5-6), pages 487-503.
    2. Birthal, Pratap S. & Joshi, P. K. & Gulati, Ashok, 2005. "Vertical coordination in high-value commodities," MTID discussion papers 85, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    3. David Orden & Donna Roberts, 2007. "Food regulation and trade under the WTO: ten years in perspective," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 37(s1), pages 103-118, December.
    4. Miyata, Sachiko & Minot, Nicholas & Hu, Dinghuan, 2009. "Impact of Contract Farming on Income: Linking Small Farmers, Packers, and Supermarkets in China," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 1781-1790, November.
    5. Unnevehr, Laurian J., 2000. "Food safety issues and fresh food product exports from LDCs," Agricultural Economics of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 23(3), September.
    6. Maertens, Miet & Swinnen, Johan F.M., 2009. "Trade, Standards, and Poverty: Evidence from Senegal," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 161-178, January.
    7. Marcel Fafchamps & Ruth Vargas Hill, 2005. "Selling at the Farmgate or Traveling to Market," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 87(3), pages 717-734.
    8. Spielman, David J. & Pandya-Lorch, Rajul, 2009. "Millions fed: Proven successes in agricultural development," IFPRI books, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), number Millions Fed Book: 2009, Winter.
    9. Johan F.M. Swinnen & Anneleen Vandeplas, 2010. "Market power and rents in global supply chains," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 41(s1), pages 109-120, November.
    10. Kelvin Balcombe & Iain Fraser & Mizanur Rahman & Laurence Smith, 2007. "Examining the technical efficiency of rice producers in Bangladesh," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(1), pages 1-16.
    11. Laurian J. Unnevehr, 2007. "Food safety as a global public good," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 37(s1), pages 149-158, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. McFall, William A. & Magnan, Nicholas & Spielman, David J., 2013. "Hybrid Rice as a Pro-Poor Technology? Evidence from Bangladesh," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150150, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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    Markets; milling; Quality; rice; value chains;

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