Insights & Publications 

In 2018, Mars, Incorporated launched the Farmer Income Lab’s work with Dalberg and Wageningen University as research partners, and with strategic guidance from Oxfam USA. We’ll share further publications from the Lab and relevant insights papers in the months to come.

In the first paper published by the Lab, the team reviewed the available evidence from hundreds of efforts to increase smallholder farmer incomes. The findings are detailed in full in our discussion paper, "What works to increase smallholder farmers’ income?"

To build on the paper’s findings and provide additional insights into how, as an industry, we can meaningfully improve incomes, in July 2018 the Lab convened a small group of experts from the academic, civil society, philanthropic and industry sectors. The Insights and Reflections document summarizes the key insights from those discussions and the Lab’s analysis of the evidence.

This work left us wondering whether we could learn more from cases of structural change in farmer income. New research in 2019 provides preliminary insights into what is working and why, as published in a Stanford Social Innovation Review (SSIR Online) article, “Boosting Farmer Incomes in Agricultural Supply Chains” and in greater detail in the article and long list of great cases, below.

Wageningen University has prepared a selection of quick scans that support the wider research effort looking at, “What are the most effective actions that lead buyers can take to enable smallholder farmers in global supply chains to meaningfully increase their incomes?”

Oxfam USA has produced a paper that paper identifies entry points for lead buyers to help close income gaps for small-scale farmers titled "A Living Income for Small-Scale Farmers: Tackling unequal risks and market power".