Home Institution

Vanderbilt University

Publication Date

Spring 2015

Program Name

Nepal: Development and Social Change


This study seeks to understand Western farmers’ markets (FMs) in Kathmandu by understanding vendors’ motivations for attending FMs; and further, their perspectives on the purpose and potential for expansion of FMs in Kathmandu’s food economy. In the US and Europe, FMs are often seen in the literature as a component of a social movement (SM) called the ‘alternative food movement’ (AFM) concerned with environmental sustainability and social justice within the processes of food production and consumption (Isenhour 2012). FMs, a type of direct market that offer face-to-face interaction between producers and consumers, are a site for the transmission of values related to the AFM, which grew out of a particular cultural context, having arisen in response to global-industrial agriculture. Nepal’s vastly different culture and relatively localized food economy make the transposition of Western farmers’ markets and their discourse of sustainability and social justice onto a Nepali context illogical; understanding vendors’ motivations for attendance, values related to food production, and beliefs about FMs in general will give insight into the role of FMs in this different, distinctly Nepali context.


Agribusiness | Agricultural and Resource Economics | Agricultural Economics | Agriculture | Asian Studies | Community-Based Research | Food Processing | Food Science | Food Security | Other Food Science | Place and Environment | Sociology of Culture | Work, Economy and Organizations


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