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Assuring Coherence between the Market-access and Livelihood Impact of Private Sustainability Standards


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Hoffmann, Ulrich and Grothaus, Frank (2015) Assuring Coherence between the Market-access and Livelihood Impact of Private Sustainability Standards. UNFSS Discussion Papers, no. 6, United Nations Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS), CH-Geneva .

PDF - English (UNFSS Discussion Papers)

Online at: https://unfss.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/unfss-discussion-paper-6-final-28may-2015.pdf


Private sustainability standards (PSS) have been rather successful in facilitating access to the quickly growing international markets for such certified products. Many PSS have also been an effective tool in improving product quality, driving up the scale of production and easing the control of international supply chains, all elements that are of key importance for traders, processors and retail companies. The market-access impact has however not been in lock step with the income and livelihood impact at producer level, in particular for small-scale producers. The main challenge for PSS is how to scale up standard-compliant production, reaching beyond a relatively small number of larger, more developed and logistically better placed producers, aimed at deepening the developmental impact so that it is more transformative of livelihoods. This will require pro-active engagement of standard setters, donors, capacity-building NGOs, and in particular governments of developing countries that goes beyond market mechanisms. Furthermore, there is the need to level at least part of the economic playing field between conventional and PSS-compliant production.

EPrint Type:Working paper
Keywords:Department of Internation Cooperation, sustainability, standards
Subjects: Food systems > Markets and trade
Values, standards and certification
Food systems > Policy environments and social economy
Research affiliation: Switzerland > FiBL - Research Institute of Organic Agriculture Switzerland > International Cooperation
Deposited By: Forschungsinstitut für biologischen Landbau, FiBL
ID Code:29951
Deposited On:22 Mar 2016 10:51
Last Modified:22 Mar 2016 10:51
Document Language:English
Refereed:Not peer-reviewed

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