Market Assessment

This section provides an overview of the importance of market analysis before and during food assistance interventions. Moreover, the section provides indications on tools that can be used for this analysis.

The Emergency Market Mapping and Analysis (EMMA) toolkit is a set of tools and guidance notes. It encourages and assists front-line humanitarian staff in sudden-onset emergencies to better understand, accommodate, and make use of market systems. It does not offer a simplistic blue-print for action. However, EMMA does provide accessible, relevant guidance to staff who are not already specialists in market analysis.

In fact, EMMA tools are adaptable, rough-and-ready, speed-orientated processes designed to reflect the information constraints and urgency of decision making required in the first few weeks of a sudden-onset emergency. The EMMA process is therefore intended to be integrated flexibly into different organizations.

The Market Information and Food Insecurity Response Analysis (MIFIRA) framework provides a logically sequenced set of questions and corresponding analytical tools to help operational agencies anticipate the likely impact of alternative (food and/or cash-based) responses and thereby identify the response that best fits a given food insecurity context.

In particular, MIFIRA analyses food commodity markets to deduce whether they can continue to supply without distortion (such as inflation or cartel behaviours) in the case of a given increase in demand. This provides evidence for decisions around whether a cash or voucher, or a local purchase programme would be appropriate in market terms, or whether it would be more appropriate to increase supply through the in-kind delivery of commodities. One down side of the MIFIRA tool is the economic expertise required to use it in comparison with the simpler EMMA toolkit.
If you want to know more check here.

The Minimum Requirements for market analysis in emergencies builds upon work already undertaken relating both to market analysis and standard setting and answers this question: “What is the minimum market analysis required at various stages of the project cycle?”

The Minimum Requirements do not presuppose that any given type of intervention is preferred and have therefore been developed in view of catering to a wide range of possible interventions. The guidance limits itself to the issues that are key to market assessments, and does not cover certain considerations that may also be critical to a complete response analysis.
The Minimum Requirements are not an assessment and analysis tool, but can be used in conjunction with any existing tool(s) that organisations are using.
Want to know more? Review the toolbox on Market Assessment.

The Pre-Crisis Market Mapping and Analysis guidance was developed in 2014 by a consortium of NGOs that included Oxfam, IRC, Concern Universal. The action was funded by USAID/OFDA and ECHO as part of an ERC funded action. Initially referred to as the Market Baseline Guidance, the Pre- Crisis Market Mapping and Analysis (PCMMA) guidance help to analyse markets before a crisis occur.

Market analysis can then become a tool for emergency response to preparedness, contingency planning, mitigation, disaster risk reduction, and early recovery. By identifying the capacity and constraints of forecast critical market systems, pre-crisis market mapping and analysis can support the design of responses that address these constraints and that could mitigate the effects of a crisis. Pre-crisis market mapping and analysis help to identify and forecast constrains and capacity of critical market systems and can support the design of responses that address these constraints and that could mitigate the effects of a crisis. Check the PCMMA Guide or view the PCMMA launch Webinar (February 2015).

ECHO recognises and encourages the following:
– Households and communities are dependent on markets for their survival.
– Markets are affected by crises.
– Market analysis informs the impact of a crisis on households and supports identification of the best response.
– Market analysis is important for disaster preparedness and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), to Link Response, Rehabilitation and Development (LRRD) and resilience.

– Actions that include a resource transfer, such as food, goods, cash or services, should at a minimum be “market aware” and larger scale actions should be market informed. A rapid market analysis is sufficient in the early stages of a rapid onset emergency and for small scale interventions.
– A comprehensive market analysis is necessary for large scale emergencies and is a worthy investment in protracted crises.
– DG ECHO should support partners to conduct comprehensive market analysis in vulnerable areas with cyclical crises, DRR programmes, and areas of protracted crises.
– Among the most known and used market analysis tools are the Market Information and Food Insecurity Response Analysis (MIFIRA) and the Emergency Market Mapping Analysis (EMMA) and Pre- Crisis Market Mapping and Analysis (PCMMA) are encouraged.
– DG ECHO will continue to invest globally in building technical capacity and guidance on market sensitive approaches.
– DG ECHO can fund indirect ‘market support’ activities in line with its own mandate.

For more information see the non-mandatory guidance in the ECHO Technical Implementing Paper (TIP) titled Markets and Market Analysis.

Market ToolBox developed with the support of ECHO, IFRC, Oxfam and the Livelihood Resource Centre. Click on the toolbox below to access practical tools and guidance documents.

Additional resources

ECHO guidance –Market Analysis TIP July 2013
Markets ToolBox
Emergency Market Mapping and Analysis (EMMA) toolkit
Barret et al, (2009) Market Information and Food Insecurity Response Analysis (MIFIRA)
More information and courses on Market Information and Food Insecurity Response Analysis (MIFIRA)
Pre-Crisis Market Mapping and Analysis (PCMMA) Webinar launch (2015)

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