Paving The Way for A Sustainable Food System in Bangladesh By Implementing The Farm to Fork Strategy

LightCastle Analytics Wing
April 28, 2022
Paving The Way for A Sustainable Food System in Bangladesh By Implementing The Farm to Fork Strategy

Project Overview

The international charitable organization, OXFAM, has recently commissioned LightCastle Partners to work with their Entrepreneur Development Programme (EDP), seeking to develop small enterprises in Bangladesh. The overall aim of this initiative is to bolster poor and marginalized groups in Bangladesh to attain success in their entrepreneurial ventures by increasing their market power and helping them to attract investment funds.

As part of the agreement, LightCastle Partners was entrusted to scour suitable entrepreneurs, primarily within the Kaunia CBO network, based on the selection rubric provided by the organization. The firm then conducted Bootcamps and accelerator programs to train its chosen pool of candidates in creating a sustainable business model and assist in forming lucrative market linkages. Finally, a Demo day was organized where the entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas in front of the investors. Based on the pitches and business model, 5 finalists were chosen and LightCastle Partners invested BDT 1 Lac in each of the finalists and supported them in purchasing cattle for their business venture.

Project Objectives

The Entrepreneur Development Programme in Bangladesh aims to achieve the following objectives:

  • Train entrepreneurs and disempowered groups to flourish in their business by implementing sustainable business models and practices
  • Provide enterprises with the necessary market linkages that will enable them to forgo any intermediaries and thus reap maximum profits
  • Assist the candidates to be investment-ready and connect them to a broad network of investors


During the project, LightCastle Partners observed that one of the core issues plaguing these smallholder farmers is the presence of middlemen who thwart their scopes of gaining significant margins. These intermediaries pressure business owners to sell goods for paltry gains and even aggravate end consumers who pay unfairly high prices. To remedy this problem and meet the goal of sustainable agriculture associated with this project, LightCastle Partners helped farmers strike a self-replicating deal, allowing them to sell their produce directly to their chief customers like grocery shops and restaurants.

Our Market Linkage Model

Our market linkage model facilitates trade relationships between the smallholder farmers and local firms to increase economic opportunities for both parties. Previously, the farmers had to deal with intermediaries to get their products sold in the local market. But after accomplishing the market linkage, the farmers within the Kaunia CBO network in Rangpur can directly sell their produce to firms, thus making the supply chain more efficient.

Oxfam Market Linkage Model 1

Figure 01: Previous Model 


Oxfam Market Linkage Model 2

Figure 02: Revised Model After The  Market Linkage 

In light of the above, LightCastle Partners facilitated market linkage of the farmers with two local firms:

  • One of the largest grocery chains in Bangladesh
  • Malancha Restaurant, an eatery in Rangpur

Market Linkage with one of the largest grocery stores in the country

To rectify the problem, LightCastle Partners helped the farmers strike a self-replicating deal, allowing them to sell their produce directly to their chief customers, like the grocery shops and restaurants. Through market linkage with one of the largest grocery chains in Bangladesh, the farmers could sell approximately 200 kgs of potatoes at BDT 23 per Kg in the Rangpur region. Here, the farmers sold at comparatively high yields, and consequently, the grocery chain was able to charge lower prices to its end consumers.

The grocery store purchasing produce from the farmers

Figure 03: The grocery store purchasing produce from the farmers 

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Market Linkage with Malancha Restaurant, Rangpur


In the first week of March, Malancha Restaurant agreed upon a deal with the farmers in the Kaunia CBO network to purchase potatoes and onions from them. By utilizing this market linkage, the farmers have managed to sell around 200 kilos of potatoes at BDT 15 per Kg and 200 kilos of onions at BDT 20 per Kg to Malancha Restaurant. Now they can replicate this model in the future without any external intervention and sell their produce directly to the restaurant.


Figure 04: Produce from the farmers

Way Forward

Through accomplishing these linkages, finally, the dream of farm-to-fork has become a reality in Bangladesh. This is going to pave the way for more expansive agricultural development. Farmers are getting a higher rate for their products and the buyers are also getting the produce of their choice at a much cheaper price due to the absence of intermediaries. This in turn ensures that the end consumers get the product at a cheaper price on the whole.

In addition, this will help build a more efficient and sustainable food system that can be resilient to crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Our food systems account for nearly one-third of the global greenhouse emissions and consume huge amounts of natural resources. This results in the loss of biodiversity, a negative impact on our health, and deprives fair economic returns and livelihood for all actors, especially the farmers. Incorporating this change in the food systems in Bangladesh brings new opportunities for all the operators in the food value chain.

WRITTEN BY: LightCastle Analytics Wing

At LightCastle, we take a data-driven approach to create opportunities for growth and impact. We consult and collaborate with development partners, the public sector, and private organizations to promote inclusive economic growth that positively changes the lives of people at scale. Being a data-driven and transparent organization, we believe in democratizing knowledge and information among the stakeholders of the economy to drive inclusive growth.

For further clarifications, contact here: [email protected]

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