Living income as a human right

Millions of farming families in Africa, Asia and Latin America do not earn a living income: the minimum amount people need to earn to have a decent standard of living. In Côte d’Ivoire for instance families need to earn at last about 200 USD per month to earn a living income, but the poorest half earns on average only half of this amount. A decent standard of living income is a human right and includes a nutritious low-cost diet, decent housing, transportation, education, clothing and healthcare and other essential needs, such as provisions for unexpected events. As can be found in our source: Living Income Community of Practice. What this looks like can be seen in the graphic below.

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[Source: Living Income Community of Practice]

For societal impact

Wageningen University & Research (WUR) aims to contribute to achieve a living income for the millions of people working in agriculture who are currently not earning a living income or living wage. Because earning a decent (living) income is a human right. And by contributing to achieving a living income, we also contribute to five SDGs: No poverty, Zero hunger, Decent work and economic growth, Reduced inequalities and Partnerships for the goals.

Evidence based recommendations

WUR evaluates the impact of current and future policies, innovations and interventions on smallholder farming family livelihoods. By offering evidence based recommendations for policy makers, agri and food companies and ngo’s and foundations, we support them in closing the living income gaps for different types of farming families as well as workers in agri and food sectors. This includes finding ways to optimise income earned from farming, conducting evaluations, but also modelling the expected impact of interventions based on existing data and the literature. Finally, WUR also supports different types of stakeholders to enhance the resilience of sectors.

Living income and Living wage

Both living income and living wage address achieving a decent standard of living for households. But they focus on different ways of earning an income. Living income refers to self-employed farming families who earn an income mainly through farming but also through small businesses and (informal) wage labour. Living wage refers to hired workers, for example in factories and on farms. Because the routes to a living income are so different between wage workers and farmers and their families, the analyses of how to achieve impact differ.