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Missing Out on Small is Beautiful: The EU’s failure to deliver on policy commitments to support smallholder agriculture in developing countries

Missing Out on Small is Beautiful: The EU’s failure to deliver on policy commitments to support smallholder agriculture in developing countries
16 pages

Authors
Mayrhofer, Jan
Saarinen, Hanna

Publication date
30 Jun 2017

DOI
10.21201/2017.0124

ISBN
978-1-78748-012-4

Publisher
Oxfam

Type
Briefing paper

With the world on the brink of an unprecedented four famines, donor countries must urgently step up efforts to tackle the structural causes of hunger and poverty. Food security and sustainable agriculture are among the European Union’s key priorities for development cooperation. The EU is committed to long-term solutions, including empowering smallholders, in particular women, and supporting environmentally sustainable approaches in agriculture. In practice, however, its development aid to the agricultural sector does not live up to its commitments.

An Oxfam analysis of more than 7,500 EU-funded projects reveals a significant lack of transparency in reporting, casting doubt on the accountability of the EU’s aid. Based on the reported data, only a small portion of the EU’s agricultural development aid complies with the aim of targeting small-scale producers and women. Funding is also biased towards industrial and export crops and countries of strategic interest, at the expense of smallholders and countries most in need.

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