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From value chain analysis to global value chain analysis: fresh orange export sector in mediterranean partner countries

Sausman, Christopher and Garcia, Marian and Fearne, Andrew and Felgate, Melanie and Ait el mekki, Akka and Cagatay, Selim and Soliman, Ibrahim and Thabet, Boubaker and Thabet, Chokri and Ben saïd, Mohamed and Laajimi, Abderraouf and Al ashkar, Haitham and El hadad-gauthier, Fatima and Mili, Samir and Martínez, Carolina (2015): From value chain analysis to global value chain analysis: fresh orange export sector in mediterranean partner countries. Published in: Sustainable Agricultural Development, Cooperative Management (2015): pp. 197-255.

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Abstract

Preceding chapters outlined some of the challenges facing Mediterranean Partner Countries (MPCs), from stubborn rural poverty to a crisis in its rapidly changing demographics. The region is facing a predicament over agricultural policy and competitiveness in its agri-food sector. MPCs and the wider region of the Middle East and North African (MENA) are failing to meet the challenge of averting heavy rural-urban migration and the current policy strategy has not brought the economic growth to the region that it desperately needs (Baldacci et al. 2008). Poor economic opportunities are pushing rural households into the city where instead of finding new prospects, poverty is merely concentrated in urban slums and unemployment continues to be a looming threat for the region (Nabli 2004). The population in MPCs that depend on agriculture coupled with a job crisis that must be con- fronted over the next decade suggests that the agri-food sector is, at least in the short term, the only realistic sector to bring economic improvements to rural areas in MENA. Yet growth in value-added agriculture in MENA is on par with sub- Saharan Africa and is significantly less than all other developing regions (Binswanger-Mkhize and McCalla 2010). Agricultural policies in the region con- tinue to link competitiveness, with volume being the overarching aim (Lindberg et al. 2006). All of this suggests that the region presents fertile ground to test a new value-orientated tool that goes beyond ‘conventional industry studies’ (Kaplinsky and Morris 2002). The present chapter contrasts with other chapters in this book. Rather than an analysis from the subject area of economics, a method that is more aligned with the business management discipline is presented. Using a methodology adapted from the work of Taylor (2005) and taken from the Supply Chain Management (SCM) literature, this chapter applies a Global Value Chain Analysis (GVCA) which identifies where value is created in the eyes of the end consumer and highlights bottlenecks based on the flow of materials, the flow of information and the strength of relationships between actors, from spot market and opportunistic to integrated and trusting relations. The contribution is primarily methodological in that it is an attempt to link process tracing and con- sumer-orientated demand pull concepts in the SCM literature (Collins 2009; Fearne 2009) with creating policy recommendations within the context of export competitiveness. The chapter begins with a literature review of value chain thinking concepts and a review of past methodological approaches in the SCM literature to value chain analysis, leading to our justification for contributing to the literature with a sectoral level of analysis and combining it with qualitative key informant information to create policy recommendations. Then an overview of the fresh orange sector in the region is described and justification for using MPCs as a context is offered. Based on the methodology we adapt from Taylor (2005) which provides a multi-faceted view of the global value chain, a set of insights are gathered about the nature of value creation and where constraints exist. Resulting policy recommendations provide examples of how a value-chain-centric approach could be used to highlight innovative policy solutions to MPCs’ agri-food export sector, for instance, dis- seminating consumer information to relevant stakeholders and incentivising investment in supply chain activities that add value for European consumers. A broad aim of our chapter is to generate a discussion over how value chain thinking can be used as a tool to inform policy debate.

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