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Publication | 8 April 2021

Value chain management under COVID-19: Responses and lessons from grape production in India

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected several economic sectors in India, dragging many to the brink of survival. In particular, the already fragile horticulture industry is now facing a double burden of a weak value chain management system as well as perishability of produce (fresh fruits and vegetables), this pandemic season. Also, the strict enforcement of lockdown has altered both demand and supply factors, which in turn have shocked various linkages in the value chain of fresh fruits and vegetables. So, this paper dissects the value chain management of grapes and its processed products, namely juice, wine, and raisins in Maharashtra, the largest producer of grapes in India. For this, a value chain analysis (VCA) is carried out by computing the degree of value addition to uncover the rupture points caused by the pandemic as well as advocate policy measures to build a resilient system. The value chain analysis shows that post-COVID-19, the degree of value addition, has shot up for the intermediary agents, i.e., pre-harvest contractors, at the expense of the farmers. Using the insights from the VCA results plus the demand and supply shocks, various policy measures are elucidated to strengthen the grape value chain.

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