Impact analysis of agroindustry and cash crop sector activities on children's rights in Madagascar

In Sava, Analanjirofo and Atsinanana Regions

Enfant malgache


In Madagascar, cash crops represent about 22% of the country's foreign currency inflow according to the latest statistics available. Vanilla and cloves occupy the first two places with respectively 52% and 33% of the total foreign exchange earnings, while lychees account for 4%. The marketing of these products at the local level should generate significant income at the municipal level, through rebates to ensure local development, and in particular quality access to basic social services for the population.

Despite this economic boom, the situation of the two million children living in the three regions remains critical. There is indeed limited access to basic social services, difficulties in ensuring food security throughout the year for the household and adolescence at risk in terms of health and protection. Producer households - estimated at 80,000 in the vanilla sector in the SAVA area, more than 30,000 in the clove sector and 20,000 in the lychee sector on the east coast - live in precarious conditions and remain very vulnerable to any fluctuations in the cash crops market and climatic variations. On average, each family has two or three children.

Child labour in the agricultural sector and agroindustry value chains remains the main focus for enterprises when it comes to the issue of children’s rights, but much remains to be done. While efforts for combating child labour have had a positive impact in limiting the use of children as labour on plantations, other forms of “invisible” work tend to develop and deserve particular vigilance. The provision of decent working conditions for parents and caregivers is still insufficient, thus impacting children's lives.

This study showed that these negative effects on children's rights are mainly linked to informal markets, generally without safeguards. Due to the complexity of the supply chain and the lack of infrastructure and although all the companies that participated in this analysis claimed not to have used child labour and encouraged compliance with this rule through awareness-raising, it remains difficult to know the real situation in the plantations at the present time

Analyse d’impact des activités du secteur de l’agro-industrie et des cultures de rente sur les droits de l’enfant à Madagascar
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French, English, Malagasy