Enabling Environment for Inclusive Horticultural Value Chain for Smallholders in Gauteng Province, South Africa

  •  Portia Ndou    
  •  Bridget Taruvinga    
  •  Christian P. du Plooy    
  •  Tshililo Ramusandiwa    
  •  Michael Mokwala    


The purpose of this study was to investigate the enabling environment within which smallholder farmers operate amidst the uneven playing field in the agricultural sector and the stringent demands of the consumer driven market. Most of the smallholder farmers utilise informal vegetable markets and these offer higher prices for the leafy vegetables. The study is based on data collected from 56 smallholder vegetable producers in Gauteng Province of South Africa. The study unveiled that the business environment has many challenges for the smallholder to competitively function in formal marketing channels, including poor upstream and downstream linkages and access to finance and technology. Access to inputs is a limiting factor to productivity with almost 41.7% of the farmers depending of government input handouts. The results of the logistic regression analysis shows a positive relationship between the choice of most utilised market and age, level of education, established arrangement with certain markets and sources of information on markets. This study concludes that there is need for multi-stakeholder engagements including organisations already working with smallholder farmers in order to ensure that there is no overlap of support services and hence indirectly ensuring wider coverage of farmer support. Both upstream and downstream linkages need to be promoted and this needs the intervention of the government through the support of organisations such as the national Department of Agriculture.

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