Browse by Theme: Value Chains

Since starting an internship at CARE International UK in the Policy and Advocacy team, I’ve had the chance to support research on women’s economic empowerment programmes, with a specific focus on the ready-made garment sector in South East Asia. CARE’s broader role in training value chain workers in partnership with companies like Mondelez, establishing savings groups with women, and committing to a Dignified Work agenda, is crucial to tackling widespread injustice in global value chains across all industries. Researching ready-made garment value chains specifically has led me to re-evaluate some of my own shopping habits, and shown me that change has to come from consumers.

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Functioning market systems and a responsible and responsive private sector are critical to livelihoods, autonomy and well-being. However, they are both heavily impacted by crisis, and women, who face greater barriers to economic activity than men, are particularly at risk. This briefing paper outlines CARE’s initial thinking on fostering economic empowerment for women and the resilience of market systems in fragile contexts.

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How can Mondelēz International – the world’s biggest chocolate company – show their consumers that their chocolate is produced in a sustainable way?

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Functioning market systems and a responsible and responsive private sector are critical to livelihoods, autonomy and well-being. However they are both heavily impacted by crisis, including war.

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Women are very important stakeholders for the whole cocoa industry – not just as customers and consumers, but also because of their roles as cocoa producers. Although cocoa is seen as a “male crop” in most of the producing countries, women have a key role in activities that are critical for the volume and quality of the production. Nevertheless, the “invisibility” of women has serious consequences for their access to technical training and productive resources in general, which is unjust and also represents a huge inefficiency in business terms.

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Emerging best practices of women’s leadership within cocoa farming in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire

This report of an extensive review of the Cocoa Life program’s approach to promoting women’s leadership within cocoa farming in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire found that the program’s interventions are having a positive effect on women’s agency, including: enabling women to have greater access to and control over productive and financial resources; strengthening women’s ability to become community leaders and role models in the community; providing structures and processes that enhance the voice and participation of women.

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I recently visited Ghana with a team of Mondelēz International Ambassadors to understand the Cocoa Life value chain from seeds to farming to trading and processing. It was great to see an innovative, inclusive business model in action, driving sustainability for the world’s largest snacking company AND improving the livelihoods of poor cocoa farmers. During the visit I saw for myself how a vibrant value chain is stronger than the sum of its partners; and why it’s important for businesses to address gender inequality and financial exclusion. I also learnt a lot about chocolate!

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