Agriculture development in India is not possible without improving the livelihoods of smallholders who constitute the majority. Often the prices for agriculture commodities are unstable and controlled by middle-men, despite government policies. According to the Project Coordinator, Udaya Sekhar Nagothu “besides improving productivity on farms, there is a need to strengthen market access for smallholders that is absolutely necessary to increase income”. He further emphasizes that agriculture has to be demand driven, where farmers can produce for markets, and not market what they produce.
RESILIENCE project teams under the guidance of MSSRF is analyzing and mapping rice-legume and other associated enterprises like dairy, fisheries, vegetable cultivation and duck/poultry major value chains in Odisha and Assam to map the relevant actors, the linkages, gaps, opportunities and constraints, and together with stakeholders prepare necessary steps to improve them.
Farmer producer organizations (FPOs) can play a major role in bringing the small farmer's together and such collectives can play an important role in dealing with market constraints by achieving the economy of scale.