Participatory Guarantee Systems

Summary: 

The innovative solution suggested for enhancing trust is to directly involve consumers into the oversight of producers that are delivering products. Participatory Guarantee Systems (PGS) are locally focused quality assurance systems. They certify producers based on active participation of stakeholders and are built on a foundation of trust, social networks and knowledge exchange. This requires locally based and non-hierarchical certification structures and mechanisms appropriate to the social context they are operating in. Finally, all PGS include guided on-site inspections. There is one major driver for making a PGS work and which differentiates a PGS from a CSA (Consumer Supported Agriculture): a structured system that builds trust among the stakeholders (mainly producers/processors and consumers) as it is based on common agreed criteria/standards and these are "auditable" as access to production and processing is granted. This "check" is a joint effort carried out as an open participatory procedure with all stakeholders interested participating.

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Stakeholder: 
Consumer
Farmer & Cooperative
Policy Maker
Type: 
Social
GAIN: 
GAIN II
GAIN III
Involved People: 
Organic Services
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