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Resilience of global and local value chains to the Covid‐19 pandemic: Survey evidence from vegetable value chains in Senegal

Photo credit: World Bank

In this paper we descriptively investigate the Covid‐19 pandemic's early impact on the fruit and vegetable supply chain in Senegal, using trade statistics and survey data collected through online questionnaires and telephone interviews with smallholder farmers, agro‐industrial companies, agricultural workers, traders, importers, and consumers. Our results point to major differences in how Covid‐19 and containment measures disrupt supply chains between the modern export‐oriented supply chain that is centered around a few large vertically integrated agro‐industrial companies, and the more traditional domestic‐oriented supply chain with a large number of smallholder farmers and informal traders—with the former being more resilient to the Covid‐19 shock. We show that both the modern and the traditional supply chain innovate to cope with the Covid‐19 containment measures. While our study is subject to some limitations, our findings bring nuance in the debate on the resilience of the food system to the pandemic, and have important policy and research implications toward international trade, social safety measures, and food and nutrition security.

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