development
Simon Maxwell

Cash Crops In Developing Countries: The Issues, The Facts, The Policies

'Cash Crops In Developing Countries: The Issues, The Facts, The Policies', in World Development, Vol 17, No. 11, December 1989

The issue of “cash crops” is profoundly controversial. The debate uses different definitions of the term and slides across levels of analysis from the household to the international economy. It also cuts across arguments, crops, countries and time periods. This paper sets out to order the debate. It deals first with definitions and taxonomy and then reviews issues connected with cash crops and (a) growth, (b) distribution, (c) food security, (d) dependency and (e) the environment. The paper concludes that with appropriate policies cash crops can offer a route to equitable growth.

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