Food Security and Asset Creation in Solomon Islands: Gender and the Political Economy of Agricultural Production for Honiara Central Market

Nichole Georgeou, Charles Hawksley, James Monks, Melina Ki'i
2019 PORTAL: Journal of Multidisciplinary International Studies  
This article presents data from a 2017 survey of vendors selling fresh produce at the Honiara Central Market (HCM) over a twelve week period from July-September. It aims to understand the economic contribution of vendors to their communities, and in particular of producer-vendors. Detailed geospatial mapping of the origin of produce sold at HCM illustrates the scope of production for market. Data shows that 70 percent of all produce comes from villages on Guadalcanal to the east of Honiara,
more » ... ast of Honiara, with intensive production for market also to the West of Honiara, from Central Province (Savo, Nggelas), and important market trade from parts of Malaita, and New Georgia. There is very limited engagement with HCM from Choiseul and Temotu, and none from Makira and Renbel. The data also indicates that the majority of producer-vendors at the HCM are women, and that the average sale of fresh produce on Fridays generates amounts of income higher than the minimum daily wage. We examine these findings using a lens of food security with a focus on asset creation. We show the economic benefit of market selling for women tends to involve lower value crops of leafy greens, nuts, fruits and root vegetables, while men are more dominant in the lucrative cash crops such as melon.
doi:10.5130/pjmis.v16i1-2.6542 fatcat:opskozxnyvg2xjl3azixdltaue