Where are we locked in, and when try to diversify?

The DiverIMPACTS case studies are facing barriers at different levels of the value chain. Work package 5, which looks at lock-ins to innovations and value chain redesign, will select a sample of case studies to further support with expertise to overcome major issues shared across case studies. As a first step, work package 5 worked with all case studies to develop an overview of these barriers.

Based on interviews carried out during co-innovation workshops, barriers faced across the 25 case studies were mapped. Overall, 68 different types of barriers were identified:

  • 29 at the farm level, from “lack of adapted varieties” to “increase of labour difficulty”;
  • 20 that refer to logistics/processing/retailing from farm to consumer, e.g., “too small volumes to be collected by cooperatives” or “purity issues related to screening of intercrop mixes”;
  • 14 in terms of contracts and arrangements between actors from “individualistic mentality and lack of trust” to “no ensured reciprocal benefits in exchange/partnership for land use”;
  • 5 at consumer level, from “uncertain market for diversification products” to “difficulty in making diversification benefits visible and communicating about them”.

Most case studies faced many barriers (between 10 and 24 per case study) across the different categories. These barriers and their presence across case studies are detailed in a project report (Deliverable D5.1).

This mapping exercise was a prerequisite to ensure that case studies selected by work package 5 are representative of the occurrence and diversity of lock-ins faced by the 25 case studies. It will ensure that the knowledge and expertise developed based on a sample of case studies in the first stage can be relevantly shared with other case studies in the second stage and widely inspire other diversification initiatives in Europe.