Challenges and coping strategies in the soyabean market chain in Uganda

Submitted by charlotte.schilt on Thu, 01/10/2019 - 08:29

This report studies linkages in the soybean market chain in Uganda in an attempt to grasp what kind of challenges occur in the market, what the consequences of these challenges are, and what kind of coping strategies were employed to counter the challenges and their consequences. Qualitative data analysis was done on 11 key informant interviews, six focus group discussions, and participant observations. A Market Map, showing linkages in the chain between relevant actors, was created and a theoretical framework of challenges, consequences and strategies was constructed. Results indicate that stakeholders are often simultaneously linked through multiple channels involving different actors. When market exchange is ineffective in one of the linkages the actor is relatively free to switch to another linkage, without any kind of repercussion due to a lack of fixed contracts and commitments. The main challenges faced in the soybean market are categorized into three categories, namely challenges with (1) market linkages, (2) access to resources, the enabling environment and ICT-based technologies, and (3) production. The consequences of these challenges were categorized as (1) inhibited adoption of soybean, associated technologies, or both, (2) low level of productivity, (3) distrust and conflict, and (4) price fluctuations and mismatches in supply and demand. Three well-grounded coping strategies to counter the challenges and consequences were (1) collective planning and marketing, (2) facilitating (multi-stakeholder) market linkages, and (3) ICT-based platforms and other ICT methods. I find qualitative evidence that certain recognized adoption determinants were associated with marketing decisions of farmers and other actors in the soybean market chain in Uganda. I argue that two cases of imperfect markets – a non-competitive market and a market operating at market-clearing prices – were noticeable in the soybean market in Uganda in 2018. Which of the two was relevant depended mainly on the extent of influence that middlemen and processors had in determining market prices for grain and inputs.


MSc and Bcs thesis, internship reports

soybean, market chain, coping strategies, Uganda, Africa
Mats Hoppenbrouwers