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Trees as Out-grower Crops for Forest Industries: Experiences from the Philippines andSouth Africa

Research reports

Arrangements under which small-scale farmers grow trees under contract to the large-scale wood products industry can be beneficial to both sides. This paper reviewed the experiences of two successful schemes in the Philippines and South Africa. Farmers were quick to adapt recommended foresterial practices to their own circumstances and found out-growing profitable enough to forfeit food crops on arable land. However, the poorest farmers could not generally afford the associated risks and capital outlay. The author noted the importance of building institutions, for example growers' co-operatives, to promote a balance in power between out-growers and timber companies.

Michael Arnold