Policy Brief : Impact of COVID-19 on the Rice Value Chain (RVC) in Asia

A retailer measures rice into a bag at a retail outlet

A large price spread is observed between producers & consumers even in peri-urban areas with producers getting only 20-25% of the retail price, which in normal times would be over 50%

A group of children standing in a rice field. Sustainable Development Goals are the blueprint for a food and nutrition secure tomorrow

Disruptions in the rice value chain will likely lead to negative impacts on many Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) especially SDG 1 (poverty), SDG 2 (hunger), SDG 3 (health & well-being). Yet impacts on GHGs and air quality may emerge as largely positive

In Asia COVID-19-induced lockdowns disrupted lives of 4 bn people including millions of Rice Value Chain actors. IRRI’s conceptual framework analyzes the impact

NEW DELHI, DELHI, INDIA, June 7, 2020 /EINPresswire.com/ -- Lockdowns, shutdowns and other protection measures induced by the COVID-19-pandemic have disrupted the upstream (input supply and production), midstream (processing, marketing, and logistics), and downstream (retail and consumption) segments of the rice value chain. This has affected the lives and livelihoods of over four billion people including millions of rice value chain actors in Asia. This policy brief 'Impact of COVID-19 on the Rice Value Chain in Asia', uses a conceptual framework, anecdotal evidences, and a multitude of pertinent information sources, to describe how COVID-19 is affecting the rice value chain and ultimately, food and nutrition security in Asia.

The major drivers disrupting the rice value chain are, restrictions on mobility, transport and trade, labor shortage, reduced access to agricultural services, limited access to input and output markets, constrained financial flow, declining income and food demand, and new government policies in place to tackle the emerging challenges. A resultant after affect, the rural-urban disconnect, thus finds farmers unable to sell produce, leading to increased price differences between producers and consumers, decreased income and cash flows, and hampered businesses in the rice value chain.

Such disruptions in the rice value chain are likely to lead to negative impacts on multiple SDGs, and in particular on SDG 1 (poverty), SDG 2 (hunger), and SDG 3 (health and well-being) while interestingly, the impacts on greenhouse gas emissions and air quality may emerge as largely positive. This suggests existing important trade-offs in terms of development outcomes.

As COVID-19 impacts all segments of the rice value chain, a ‘system approach’ is needed to mitigate the impacts of the crisis. The key recommendations, thus include minimizing supply chain disruptions, ensuring access to input and output markets, providing access to agricultural services, keeping trade open, providing financial support to affected actors, promoting digital services, expanding social safety nets, and investing in rice research.

Download to read the full policy brief --- https://bit.ly/3h44Zws

Debjani Samantaray
International Rice Research Institute
+91 1125807979
email us here

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