Is market systems development approach blind to sustainable agriculture?
Concerns about unsustainable practices in development are legitimate. It’s true that non-judicious use of chemicals and pesticides is contributing to ecological degradation and affecting the health of consumers. It’s true that poor and disadvantaged farmers aren’t getting equitable benefits such as income compared to bigger and more powerful private sector actors. It’s also true that legal frameworks for ensuring quality standards in many countries aren’t functioning well.
Is market systems development approach a dogma that turns a blind eye to such challenges and concerns? In this blog post, I try to show how such concerns should move away from the need to do or have nice things and be based more on understanding the underlying questions that market systems development ask.