BoP Innovation Center (BoPInc) and partners, among others Fresh Studio, rereleased the second publication of a series of five about inclusive business at the Base of the Pyramid (BoP), the poorest socio-economic group in the world.
Understanding the local BoP system and individuals within this system – consumers, producers, entrepreneurs – is fundamental to ensuring the successful development of ‘Inclusive Innovations’. In most cases, traditional marketing tools fail to provide useful market and consumer insights. The novelty of the subject means specific BoP marketing theory and models are yet to be developed.
This publication covers the main challenges, and aims to discover and understand new ways to research the BoP market in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda and Vietnam.
‘Inclusive Innovation-shared value at the Base of the Pyramid’ is the first publication of a series of five based on experiences and insights from the pilots within the ‘Three Pilot for Pro-Poor Innovation (3P4PPI) program in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda and Vietnam. This program is a close cooperation between BoP Innovation Center (BoPInc) and its partners, among others Fresh Studio.
To accelerate the development of successful and profitable BoP innovations it is necessary to capture and share knowledge and identify issues that impact all sectors and themes. The objective of the ‘3 Pilots for Pro-Poor Innovation’ (3P4PPI) program is to gain more knowledge and experience on market-driven pro-poor innovations through the development of three separate pilots. Throughout this process, learning’s are captured, processed and shared with different organizations interested in and working on inclusive innovations.
This publication sets the scene on inclusive innovation. This is the market-driven development of an innovation along the value chain which includes low-income groups in the process and has impact in a social, economic and ecologically sustainable way.
This publication highlights the latest insights both in theory and in practice to research the BoP market and introduces main challenges encountered in the pilots
DALAT – Research and training initiatives are helping Vietnamese farmers produce year-round exportable crops.
Rene van Rensen, R&D manager at Fresh Studio Innovations Asia, speaks to ASIAFRUIT about some of the training projects it has been working on with Vietnamese farmers to help boost their profitability through good agricultural practices.
How does Fresh Studio work with governing bodies in order to maximise funding and other support for its training projects?
Rene van Rensen: For most production-related projects we organise farmer field days to present results and let farmers see these for themselves. At this tage we will also invite local authorities so that they can share the results in their network.
Currently we mainly work with funding from the private sector and national governements outside Vietnam. We would, however, love to make use of the funding Vietnam has received from, for example. the World Bank to implement practical projects at farmer level.
HANOI – ‘I am impressed to see how FrieslandCampina has worked successfully with local farmers to increase the production of fresh milk in Vietnam.’
Locally produced fresh milk now makes up 19% of national milk production,’ international cooperation minister Ben Knapen said yesterday after visiting a model farm and a milk processing plant in southern Vietnam. Both are owned and managed by FrieslandCampina.
Dairy communities FrieslandCampina aims not only to boost production, but to develop ‘dairy communities’, Mr Knapen was told. Through education and training, the company has already helped 3,000 small farmers meet quality and sustainability standards, and collaborate with arable farmers who produce animal feed. FrieslandCampina organises the collection, processing and distribution of milk throughout Vietnam: from grass to glass – no mean feat in such a large country.
Fresh milk The average farmer in Vietnam has 10 cows. Farms are generally many hours drive from the nearest milk factory, which supplies some 120,000 shops. Fresh milk is not easy to come by in Vietnam. Three-fourths of all milk products are made from imported raw materials, like milk powder. Demand for fresh milk products far exceeds supply. So FrieslandCampina is working with Heus, Wageningen University and Fresh Studios to increase fresh milk production by setting up ‘dairy development zones’.
From aid to trade Mr Knapen’s visit to FrieslandCampina concluded his visit to Vietnam. He was interested in how the shift from aid to trade is being made. The Netherlands will end its bilateral development relationship with Vietnam at the end of this year (which year?), in favor of an economic relationship built on the knowledge and experience gained from development co-operation, and the expertise of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation.
At the end of his visit, Mr Knapen flew to Tokyo where he will attend the World Bank Group’s annual meeting.
HANOI – ‘The demand for sustainable and safe food is growing in Vietnam, and the spending power for such products has increased.
This creates opportunities for Vietnamese farmers and Dutch entrepreneurs, who are internationally renowned for their expertise in sustainable agricultural methods,’ development cooperation minister Ben Knapen said on Tuesday after visiting a sustainable vegetable producer near the Vietnamese capital Hanoi.
The minister is paying a working visit to Vietnam to witness the transition from aid to trade and investment. Vietnam has an economic growth rate of around 5%, and is one of the three developing countries where the Netherlands is deploying knowledge and experience accumulated through development cooperation for economic diplomacy.
The minister visited a sustainable vegetable farm, established with the help of development funding as well as with private financial support by specialists from the Dutch food chain company Fresh Studio. He spoke with women who have been trained to cultivate 18 types of high-quality vegetables without excessive use of pesticides. The women produce vegetables such as amaranth, choy sum, cucumber, aubergine, kang kong, kohlrabi and spinach on their smallholdings, destined for the Vietnamese market.
The successful vegetable chain is now financially independent, and each day supplies large volumes of safe, fresh vegetables to the population of Hanoi. Fresh Studio currently has plans, together with PepsiCo and (on the Dutch side) HZPC, Wageningen UR and Agrico, to devise a new sustainable food chain for potatoes. Mr Knapen has asked the company to elaborate on these plans, and to send them to NL Agency for a final assessment.
Mr Knapen also visited the deputy foreign minister, Bui Thanh Son. Topics of discussion included bilateral ties, cooperation and dialogue between the European Union and Vietnam in various fields, including human rights. The World Bank’s annual meeting was also discussed. On Wednesday Mr Knapen will travel to Ho Chi Minh City to learn about flooding and water management problems there.
Fresh Studio was contracted by GIZ and IDH to develop a Globalgap certified smallholder pangasius (catfish) farmer group in Tra Vinh Province.
Following an expression of interest by European stakeholders to source pangasius from Vietnam, in 2009 a Public Private Partnership (PPP) was initiated to develop more sustainable pangasius production systems that meet European market standards. The public partners in the consortium were the German Developing Agency (GIZ) and the Dutch Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) and from NGO side also WWF Germany and WWF USA participated. A large fish importer and a multinational wholesaler represented the private sector within the consortium. The project targeted its activities to three professional large scale Vietnamese pangasius producers as well as a group of small scale pangasius farmers. (Average 1,5 pond per farms).
For Fresh Studio, the mission was divided into several components. First, we assessed the discrepancies between existing production systems and the GLOBALG.A.P. and ASC standards. Later, Fresh Studio created an Internal Control System (ICS) for the group of small farmers, trained them in the implementation of the ASC and GLOBALG.A.P. standards and assisted them in maintaining their system towards the final audit.
After a period of standards implementation by the farmer group, the 4 first farmers received certification from Control Union for the GlobalGap standard early this year. It is expected that this group will grow and that the best performers among those farmers will be able to apply for an ASC audit. We would like to thank the Tra Vinh fisheries association for all their great efforts to make this project successful.