The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ (FAO’s) cash and voucher programmes benefit smallholder farmers who are particularly vulnerable to natural hazards, market volatility, conflicts and protracted crises.
Cash and vouchers play a critical role in response to crises or shocks when farmers and pastoralists no longer have the ability to purchase food, agricultural inputs or livestock because their assets have been damaged or depleted.
Cash and voucher programmes such as cash-for-work, voucher schemes, input trade fairs and unconditional cash transfers enable people to identify for themselves what their most pressing needs are and decide which goods and services they wish to purchase in local markets.
FAO cash transfer interventions provide relief to farmers while also helping them to protect their livelihoods from future shocks (e.g. drought, illness, poor production), overcome cash shortages and improve their food security and nutrition.
When local markets are functioning and quality goods are available, cash transfers are an important tool to develop more productive and resilient agricultural systems that enhance and maintain food security.