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World Development
Vol. 74, 2015, Pages: 386–396

Development Conditions for Family Farming: Lessons From Brazil

Gabriel Medina, Camila Almeida, Evandro Novaes, Javier Godar, Benno Pokorny

Federal University of Goiás, Brazil.


There is a renewed global interest in support of family farming becoming a more competitive sector, contributing to poverty alleviation, food security, and economic growth. This paper explores the development conditions faced by family farmers across Brazil. We not only reveal a potential for development, represented by the great number of family-based rural households, but also present several structural constraints faced by most family farmers, as well as great discrepancies among regions. We argue for encouraging the existing family farming potential by designing policies that consciously target specific regional challenges and avoid excluding segments not fitting into the modernization paradigm.

Keywords: rural development; agricultural policies; peasantry; family farming; socio-economic indicators.

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