Senait Getahun Worku is a PhD student at Utrecht University, Faculty of Geoscience International Development Studies Group (IDS). She works within the framework of Follow the Food research program which investigates the impact of foreign agribusiness investments on local food security in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Ghana. Her research specifically examines the different business models used by foreign agribusiness companies working in Ethiopia, how the companies include/exclude the local community in their business operations, what impacts does the inclusion/exclusion has on the food security situation of the local community.
Differentiated livelihood impacts of international agricultural financialization in Ethiopia
Creating market opportunities for poor people in developing countries is advocated as a way of mitigating development challenges such as poverty and food insecurity. This presumption is based on the belief that the cause of poverty of the rural poor is their exclusion from a beneficial market opportunity. As a result, many companies are incentivized by governments and donor agencies to include low-income people in their value chains. Some studies that examined the integration of farmers with companies’ value chains found a positive impact on productivity and household income. However other studies also found that such kind of engagements favours high-resource endowed farmers leaving the resource-poor and most vulnerable ones. This leads to sustaining the traditional marginalization of resource-poor farmers. Moreover, when agribusiness enters a rural market as much as they create new market opportunities they also set a new resource allocation pattern in the locality. This new pattern instigates a different impact for different groups of rural society. This paper, therefore, seeks to examine the different impact pathways rural society experience as a result of their interaction with a proclaimed inclusive agribusiness in West Gojam zone, Ethiopia.
Affiliation: Utrecht University