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Improving lives by solving problems in agriculture and the environment

Improving lives through better trade

Improving lives through better trade

More efficient, more profitable agricultural trade for developing countries

Demand for commodities such as cocoa, coffee and tea may outstrip supply as soon as 2020 unless we improve crop production and reduce wastage. By better integrating the world’s smallholder farmers into supply chains, a shortfall can be avoided. CABI builds expertise and capacity along supply chains to increase food security and food safety, and improve prosperity for all.

Harnessing the power of agricultural trade is a highly effective way to secure a supply of safe, high quality produce for the future. Trade is an engine for economic growth in producing countries, helping to alleviate poverty by improving farmers’ livelihoods.

However, developing countries that attempt to engage in world trade face many barriers. Pests and diseases can destroy crops in farmers’ fields, or post-harvest losses can occur due to inadequate storage conditions. Poor production and processing techniques can result in food that fails to comply with SPS (sanitary and phytosanitary) standards so export to lucrative markets is barred.

CABI is a knowledge organization, so we apply knowledge solutions. We introduce and facilitate sustainable best agricultural practices, and provide information at every level in the supply chain. We advise governments on quarantine issues, and help farmers to understand the needs of global markets.

We also build capacity to allow knowledge to be translated into sustainable, practical actions, through skills based training and improving links between producers, processors, manufacturers and retailers.

The work we do enables:

Smallholder farmers and producer groups to increase their incomes, by growing better quality crops and accessing markets to trade their products.

Manufacturers and retailers to secure a reliable supply of quality assured, sustainable produce, cut costs by reducing waste, and protect their brand by providing safe, affordable food.

National economies to grow, as exporting countries develop their trade potential.

Governments to meet their objectives in economic performance, employment and livelihoods.

Consumers to buy better quality, safer food that offers good value.

Our trade and market access activities are focused in three key areas:

Biosecurity and SPS (sanitary and phytosanitary)
Supply chain support
Crop management

Our trade brochure tells you more about our work.

Trade brochure cover


See some of our trade videos


Improving SPS training and knowledge sharing in cocoa (CocoaSafe)

Cocoa is an important source of income across Southeast Asia. To maintain access to markets, and sustain farmers’ livelihoods and national GDP, all food safety and international SPS (sanitary and phytosanitary) standards must be met. This project is building SPS capacity in the region, to ensure production and trade meets legislation on pesticide... >>

Improved management strategies for cocoa in Papua New Guinea

Cocoa is a highly important export in Papua New Guinea, 80% of which comes from smallholders dependent on it for their livelihoods. But, production is threatened by the cocoa pod borer. Tricky to control, it is now one of the most serious threats to the global cocoa industry. We are developing effective ways to detect and predict infestations such... >>

Australia-Africa plant biosecurity partnership

Agricultural trade is a powerful engine for economic growth, poverty alleviation and food security but diseases are impacting it. Countries are therefore looking for ways of making agricultural trade secure. This initiative aims to facilitate trade by addressing plant pest and disease problems that hinder agricultural exports and threaten food... >>

Promoting sustainable tea production in India

India is the second largest producer and exporter of tea in the world and it can be a powerful engine for development. However, tea crops here suffer from a range of pests and diseases. Pesticides are the main management solution but this results in increased production costs and potential risks to human health. So, we undertook a major scientific... >>

Phytosanitary system development for the vegetable sector in Ghana

Ghana’s vegetable sector has the potential to create 20,000 skilled jobs, and increase exports to the EU. But exports are hampered by quarantine pests. This project aims to improve the current system and develop a new organic supply chain by establishing an effective phytosanitary system, facilitating strategic alliances between importers and... >>

Breaking barriers, facilitating trade

Intra-regional trade is key in promoting economic development and improving food security within East and southern Africa. However, due to higher costs, many countries here are trading more with distant countries. We want to change this and increase the trade in agrifood products within the region. The CABI team will be working with COMESA to... >>

Phytosanitary Risk Management Programme in Pakistan

Tackling agricultural pests in Pakistan in a safe and sustainable way will save crop losses and benefit Pakistan’s exports. We are strengthening the capacity of Pakistan’s systems to implement biocontrol programmes for agricultural pests that cause huge problems. We will also lessen the impact of post-harvest pests and aflatoxins, and improve the... >>