Quality management in supply chains of non-timber forest products: The case of gum arabic in Senegal

G. Mujawamariya*, K. Burger, M. D'Haese

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


Low prices associated with variable quality of non-timber forest products in terms of users and consumers' needs and requirements are one of the factors limiting access and participation in markets. Quality can be determined on field or by the user. The current study explores the possibility to understand the current practices of producers in terms of quality supply and to link at least some of the users' quality criteria to production and marketing practices of producers. The study finds that good quality as defined on field is not always good when measured in laboratory; yet improving quality on field increases the likelihood of obtaining chemically good gum. Furthermore, determinants of supply by collectors and traders are investigated for two quality attributes namely size and cleanliness of gum nodules. Quality maintenance and improvement is influenced by harvest and post-harvest practices, behaviour and experience of traders, and price expectations. Research implications include the necessity for scholars interested in product quality to bring together the production and consumption sides because their perceptions and requirements may not always converge; regular trainings for collectors of non-timber forest products focusing on quality aspects; jointly establish clear rules of forest and market management in order to counteract the influence of market forces (price) on forests exploitation and enabling traders to have a definition of quality that is coherent and responsive to the actions and needs of collectors and users respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationQuality and Innovation in Food Chains
Subtitle of host publicationLessons and insights from Africa
EditorsJ. Bijman, V. Bitzer
PublisherWageningen Academic Publishers
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9789086868254
ISBN (Print)9789086862801
Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2016


  • Field assessment
  • Laboratory assessment
  • Marketing
  • Ordered logit


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