Quality considerations in todays competitive market environment have a significant impact on the ability of agrifood SMEs in developing countries to compete in local, regional and international markets. Through its field programme and training programmes, FAO builds the capacity of chain partners to apply technologies and adopt the required quality control processes, business management practices, logistics arrangements and infrastructure systems to enhance quality and safety along the post-production value chain. Support is provided to identify, appraise and disseminate information on practical, appropriate and effective management practices and technologies with particular attention to small-scale agro-industries. National level institutional and organisational strengthening programmes are also supported.
Examples of current programmes related to quality management systems include the following:
Appraisals of: logistics arrangements and infrastructure systems for enhancing quality and safety; national level requirements and priorities for supportive institutions and related organisational strengthening requirements; and experiences with implementing specific quality programmes in Africa;
Preparation of information and training materials on technologies and business practices to enhance quality and safety, as well as on specific quality schemes;
Support to countries to develop programmes on applying technologies, business practices and infrastructure systems to enhance quality and safety;
In collaboration with IFAD, FAO is carrying out appraisals of quality and safety constraints in cassava value chains in Benin, Cameroon, Ghana and Nigeria with a view to preparing a training manual on the subject.