The ELPS initiative, a collaboration between IFAD and Japan’s MAFF, aims to connect small-scale food producers with larger agrifood companies, empowering local communities and highlighting culinary heritage in sustainable gastronomy tourism worldwide.
ROME / TOKYO – The recent launch of the Enhanced Linkages between Private Sector and Small-scale Producers initiative (ELPS) by the United Nations International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries of Japan (MAFF) is a significant step towards empowering local communities and promoting gastronomy tourism. The initiative aims to connect small-scale food producers with larger agrifood companies, fostering global food security and making local food systems more resilient and sustainable.
As Tetsuro Nomura, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan said, “This initiative will facilitate initial stages of collaboration between the private sector and small-scale farmers in developing countries. It will work with local farmers and their organizations that are deemed to merit from the private sector’s expertise in enhancing their productivity and sustainability, and in turn provide the private sector with opportunities to engage in local farming communities to enhance the sustainability of their value chains.”
“IFAD is honoured to implement this flagship initiative to boost public-private-producer rural investments, with the leadership of Japan under the G7 Presidency. With IFAD’s unique capacity, we can further strengthen the capacity of small-scale food producers in developing countries to access new markets” said Alvaro Lario, President of the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development. “Small-scale producers can greatly benefit from the expertise, knowledge, and technologies from private sector to increase production and incomes, while contributing to global food security.”
The impact of ELPS on local communities will be multifold. By partnering with private sector companies, small-scale food producers, including farmers, fisherfolk, herders, and food processors, can enhance their productivity and sustainability. These collaborations will not only lead to increased incomes and improved livelihoods for the small-scale producers but will also create opportunities for agritourism.
Gastronomy tourism has been gaining prominence in the international travel market, as travelers seek authentic and unique culinary experiences. By showcasing local food products and traditional cuisine, destinations can attract tourists interested in immersing themselves in local culture. ELPS can play a vital role in promoting local food products by creating a strong connection between private sector companies and small-scale producers. This will enable these producers to access new markets and showcase their culinary heritage, thereby boosting tourism revenues for the local community.
Furthermore, the initiative will also have positive spillover effects on the environment. As the private sector engages with local farming communities, they will be encouraged to adopt sustainable and environmentally friendly practices. This will contribute to more responsible tourism and the promotion of eco-conscious gastronomy experiences.
In conclusion, the Enhanced Linkages between Private Sector and Small-scale Producers initiative will have a significant impact on local communities and the promotion of local food products and gastronomy in international tourism markets. By fostering strong partnerships between small-scale producers and larger agrifood companies, ELPS will boost the resilience of local food systems, improve livelihoods, and contribute to the growth of sustainable gastronomy tourism.
Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.