Gender Transformative And Responsible Agribusiness Investment In South East Asia (GRAISEA) Project

GRAISEA Project

CSR Platform members meeting

Context

In Cambodia, the vast majority of the population lives in rural areas and sustains its livelihood from agriculture, especially rice farming. Oxfam sees rice as an important and strategic commodity, both in Asia and worldwide. Despite a relative decline in total agricultural and economic output in the region and the world, and to some extent in Cambodia, rice farming is still a key source of income for smallholder producers and their families, especially women. Yet, many rice producers remain poor and vulnerable because of inequalities in rice value chains.

Among others, the rice sector is facing a range of social, environmental, and economic issues that include:

Based on the recognition that financial viability and gender equality and sustainable supply chains are not mutually exclusive, GRAISEA aims to promote win-win-win partnerships between communities, small-scale producers and larger businesses.

Responsible investment can increase the productivity and incomes of small-scale producers, particularly women, and it is the best opportunity to lift them out of poverty. Small-scale producer’s integration into the supply chain is a key strategy and Oxfam has substantial experience and models in linking women and smallholders to businesses, while protecting access to and sustainability of resources.

The GRAISEA programme in Cambodia seeks to achieve improved livelihoods of small-scale rice producers through more responsible and inclusive value chains and private sector investments, and women demonstrating economic leadership.

Approach

GRAISEA’s Cambodia programme focuses on three intertwined approaches:

  • Influencing the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) agenda and other private sector regulatory frameworks in Cambodia and the region with ASEAN and other member-states, and with eading agribusiness companies and multi-stakeholder initiatives both in the region and in the country.
  • Demonstrating gender transformative and responsible agribusiness investments for smallholders, particularly for women in the certified organic rice value chain in Preah Vihear province.
  • Promoting responsible and innovative investments among small and medium enterprises.

Chu Meta, a woman farmer who is an active member of one of the Agriculture Cooperatives supported by the project is attending a training on organic standard, Preah Vihear province. Photo: Oxfam

Oxfam and its partners are strategically working at both local and national level to ensure the target outcome. We work with them through:

  • The establishment of The CSR Platform Cambodia, a multi-stakeholder initiative aiming at promoting CSR and responsible business practices in Cambodia to benefit women and men smallholder producers and workers
  • Policy advocacy at national level on key pieces of legislation and regulations, such as the draft Environmental Code and Environmental Impact Assessment Guidelines
  • Technical and capacity building support to selected agricultural cooperatives in Preah Vihear and the Preah Vihear Meanchey Union of Agricultural Cooperatives.