ODOP scheme has its traces way back in history. Different countries has been calling them with different name, but the idea built its movement on three principles: local yet global, self-reliance and creativity, and human resources development.
The One village one product movement (OVOP) is a Japanese regional development program. It began in Ōita Prefecture in 1979 when the then-governor Morihiko Hiramatsu advocated the program. Implementation started in 1980. Communities selectively produce goods with high added value. One village produces one competitive and staple product as a business to gain sales revenue to improve the standard of living for the residents of that village. Among them are shiitake, kabosu, greenhouse mikan, beef, aji, and barley shōchū. Over 300 products have been selected.
The One Village One Product project that originated in Japan's Oita Prefecture is just one component of many official Japanese development assistance projects aiming to promote rural development in more than 30 countries. Not all efforts, however, result in the same level of sustainability. The projects that satisfy these three basic principles are generally found to be sustainable. These principles can also be applicable to overseas projects.
One Village One product (OVOP) movements of Japan was then followed by Thailand and Malawi as well. Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra of Thailand initiated a similar program, One Tambon One Product. The OVOP movement encourages the mobilization of local human, material, and cultural resources to create value-added products/services for domestic and external markets. However, the Thai and Malawian OVOPs were initially different from the Japanese OVOP due to the strong initiative taken by the central government and in the emphasis on economic, rather than social, purposes. OVOP has helped to improve productivity in some cases, changed the value chain structure in other cases, provided market access through labeling and reached many thousands of households.