The Knowledge Programme on ‘Small producers agency in globalised markets’ released this first Working Paper during the First Provocative Seminar and the Hivos Conference on Knowledge and Change. This paper looks at some of the big dilemmas confronting small-scale producers. It revisits five decades of changes in policies, behavior and practices and highlights some areas of debate that have changed in light of the 2007-2008 global food crisis.
Small-scale producers have choices to make. To make those choices, farmers have to weigh the possibilities and constraints that they face. The document intends, more than providing answers or recommendations, to draw attention to some of the important challenges that small-scale producers will need to reflect on and engage in if they wish to see their needs and interests determinant in the policies and institutional arrangements being established by public and private actors in the new context.