Driven by urbanisation and income growth, the West African food economy has radically changed over the past 60 years. The food economy, including all activities involved in producing food, from production to processing, transport and distribution totalled USD 178 billion in 2010, equal to 36% of the regional GDP. Forty percent of the value added in the food economy is generated by non-agricultural activities. Post-harvest activities are rapidly developing and are expected to grow more quickly in coming decades than other segments of the food value chain. Policies and monitoring systems need to adjust to these changes to leverage the emerging opportunities in agricultural development, employment and value creation. This paper estimates the size and structure of this new food economy, and explores major policy implications. The document is available in French and English here.
You can also read the article by Laurent Bossard, Director of the OECD Sahel and West Africa Club Secretariat here