Grahame Dixie, head of the World Bank's Agribusiness Group, says efficient and inclusive value chains can increase income in rural areas and help disadvantaged workers.
The key to inclusive and efficient value chains, he says, is for people along the chain to think of others as partners. This is rarely done, but it can increase income flow if people understand that they can improve efficiency by coordinating transfers at key checkpoints along the chain.
While agriculture is still the most important rural economic sector, its value is diminishing compared to the non-farm rural economy, says Dixie. This refers to the support systems around farming -- transportation, sales, retail, and processing. However, the sector is misunderstood because few analysts are studying it.