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Smallholders produce about 70 per cent of the world’s food

However, smallholder production faces a number of challenges

Production companies play a key role in realising smallholder development

Welcome to SHARP

Smallholder Acceleration through Responsible Production and Sourcing

SHARP is a multi-stakeholder partnership which works with the private sector to support sustainable smallholder development, while improving livelihoods, minimising deforestation and improving food security.

Smallholders play a crucial role in agricultural production, globally, producing about 70 per cent of the world’s food. This includes a significant proportion of the commodity crops that form the bulk of global supply chains for food, fuel and fibre. Smallholder production is essential to national and international supply chains for major commodity crops, and brings key livelihood benefits for the smallholders themselves. However, smallholder production also presents a number of challenges for both the farmers and the companies they supply.

The challenges faced in smallholder development include inadequate knowledge of sustainable and efficient production practices, limited access to responsible supply chains and a lack of affordable finance. As a result, yields can be low, negative environmental impacts significant and income gains limited. Additionally, it can be challenging for smallholders to meet the emerging responsible sourcing requirements of major buyers and hence get access to these supply chains.

In order to find solutions to these challenges, many stakeholder groups need to be involved ranging from governments to the smallholders themselves. Production companies in particular, often already have a close relationship with smallholders, by providing finance or technical support in addition to being their main customers. However, despite this, companies are not always sure how best to provide support to the smallholders that supply them.

Therefore, SHARP focuses on working with production and supply chain companies globally to support responsible smallholder development across agricultural commodity sectors, in collaboration with other stakeholders including financial institutions, governments, NGOs and the smallholders themselves.