On June 21, 2019, ISET’s Rati Kochlamazashvili moderated the Farmers’ Congress, which took place at the Hualing Hotel in Tbilisi. The congress discussed the Challenges and Opportunities of Strengthening Market Linkages for Smallholder Farmers.
The event was organized by ‘Bridge – Innovation and Development (BRIDGE)’ and ‘International Organization People in Need (PIN)’ within the framework of the EU-funded ‘Civil Society Organizations Supporting Free Trade with European Union’ program.
The main goal of the congress was to support dialogue between farmers, state bodies, and the private sector (specifically hypermarket and supermarket chains), the latter being one of the prerequisites for the development of the agricultural sector. The participants discussed the challenges farmers face in the process of selling their products on the local market. Congress also brought to attention a number of successful cases and gave a chance to smallholder farmers to establish new contacts with retailers for future collaboration.
Up to 50 farmers throughout Georgia had the opportunity to meet with government representatives, private sector representatives (particularly retailers), and other stakeholders, including donors, business support organizations, and experts.
“Market linkages are crucial for smallholder farmers and I hope that today’s discussion opens up new opportunities for supply chain actors to make real business deals that will be beneficial to all,” Rati Kochlamazashvili said while opening the discussion.