Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has funded Farm Concern International, FCI to generate income worth USD 969 Million and build better livelihoods for 115, 491 smallholder households by linking them to 2,187 wholesale traders within 48 Months.

Summary

Over the years, implementation of Domestic Horticulture Markets (DoHoMa) programme has impacted over 118,282 direct beneficiaries such as smallholder farmers, buyers and frontline facilitators at farmer and market level in Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda and Malawi. Smallholder farmers have recorded cumulative sales worth USD 197,759,320, a 400% increase in turnover against the target sales value.

The intervention has continued to bring out several lessons from smallholder commercialization in the four target countries. The program beneficiaries continue to be exposed to use of new technologies and management practices resulting in a general increase in investment on production. Through the programme efforts, a total of 99,322 acres of land under target crops has been commercialized.

 

Highlights

Strengthening smallholder farming in Africa through Domestic Markets Regional programme

Low productivity is a key explanation for the poor performance of African agriculture. A review of performance of agriculture over the last 50 years shows that Africa has clearly lagged far behind other regions of the world. For instance, whereas the other regions were able to increase yields by more than 150%, Africa only managed 72% from the 1960s. In per capita terms, food production in China has risen by a factor of nearly 3.5, whereas it has fallen in Africa and only recently recovered to match that of the 1961 levels (Godfray et al. 2010). ... Read More

Partnership Provides Access to Clean and Certified Seeds for Smallholder Farmers

In many developed and developing countries, Irish potato is ranked among the most important source of household food along with wheat, rice, and maize. In Kenya, potato ranks number two after maize (FAO, 2012). Potato has a high potential for addressing food insecurity due to its high productivity per unit area. However, farmers’ ability to have high productivity per unit area is dependent on many factors, such as availability of clean and certified seeds and good crop husbandry. In addition, market high volumes are dependent on the post-harvest handling skills and practices of the farmer... Read More

Smallholder farmers in Tanzania make the transition from subsistence to commercial farming

The Domestic Horticulture Markets (DoHoMa) Programme provides a platform for the participation of smallholders in the marketplace, triggering demand processes for domestic trade in horticultural and staple food commodities. The programme works through Farm Concern International’s (FCI) Commercial Village Model (CVM) to propel smallholder commercialization. In the course of implementing DoHoMa, it has become apparent that traditional markets play a major role in driving agricultural trade and enterprise. The intervention involves scouting and analyzing various markets to identify the major wholesalers on the one hand. On the other hand, at the village level, farmers are assisted to compute a cost-benefit analysis to determine their break-even point...Read More

Smallholder farmers realise better yields through collective action harvest

Low productivity is the key explanation for the poor performance of African agriculture. A review of performance of agriculture over the last 50 years shows that Africa has clearly lagged far behind other regions of the world. For instance, whereas the other regions were able to increase yields by more than 150%, Africa has only managed 72% from the 1960s. In per capita terms, food production in China has risen by a factor of nearly 3.5%, whereas it has fallen in Africa and only recently recovered to match that of the 1961 levels (Godfray et al. 2010). Read More

Land factor: Why smallholder farmers are vital in enhancing food security

Over the years, the world population has been growing at an unprecedented high rate. The United Nations had projected that there would be an estimated 9 billion people in the face of the earth by the year 2014. According to World Population Review, "Africa countries are all growing fast... because there is large number of women who have no access to planning their families.” In most countries in the continent, the population growth is in excess of 2% every year... Read More

Smallholder farmers earn over 18% discount from collective inputs purchases, record sales USD 18,661,271

FCI, through the DoHoMa project, has facilitated the formation of 189 Commercial Villages in Limuru, Lari and Githunguri in Kiambu County which have been linked to 3 formal and 12 informal markets. They have also been trained on disease & pest control as well as safe use of chemicals. The formal markets include Uchumi supermarkets, Kijabe hospital and Konjung’a hotel while the informal ones include Kangemi, Wakulima, Muthurwa, Gikomba, Limuru, Githunguri, Wangige, Korogocho, Githurai, Makongeni, Mombasa and Nyambari markets which have 380 traders who currently buy directly from farmers. Read More

 

 

 

Kenya Case Studies


 

Esther Wambui increases Average annual sales of exotic vegetables by 140%

Before the Domestic Markets Regional Programme implemented by Farm Concern International and funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation intervention, Esther a mother of 5 would grow exotic vegetables and sell the produce to brokers who sourced at farm gate. She would make average annual sales of Kshs. 60,000 due to the exploitation by middlemen who took advantage of her desperation to sell at a lower price..Read More

Commercialization initiative transforms farmer's living standards

Mr. Samuel Kingori is a member of Embaringo Commercial Village in Central Kenya started as a result of FCI commercialization trainings under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The programme has transformed the life of Samuel from a subsistence farmer earning Ksh. 40,000 per season to a commercial farmer making Ksh. 300,000 per season... Read More

Smallholder farmer benefits from farming Traditional African Vegetables

William Gathungu and his wife Mary are among the households in the Domestic Markets Regional Programme implemented by Farm Concern International with support from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation that have realized the nutritional and economic value of growing Traditional African Vegetables (TAVs). They are members of Kahuho Commercial Village in Nairobi Kenya. Before Farm Concern International intervention, the couple was growing TAVS on less than 1/8 an acre…Read More

Smallholder farmers now feed East Africa’s largest open air market

Farmers in Kieni Constituency, Nyeri County, are defying the notion that smallholder farmers cannot meet private sector market demands. The private sector often shuns conducting business with smallholder farmers because they often have a challenge meeting the quantity and quality market requirements. ... Read More

Programme inspires Isabella Paul to financial stability

A few years ago, Isabella Paul, a widowed mother of two from Muruguma village in Eastern Kenya, considered farming an inadequate way to earn a living. This was because all her previous endeavours to make profit from farming carrots and cabbages had proved futile. However, two years after joining the Domestic Markets Regional programme implemented by Farm Concern International and funded by Bill and Melinda Gates, she has been able to pay school fees for her daughter from onion and Irish potato farming.. Read More

Farmer realizes 900% increase in onion production

About five years ago, an acre in Gitegi village in Central Kenya would sell for Kshs. 50,000 (USD 547.29). That same piece of land now sells for Kshs. 700,000 (USD 7,662.00). In addition, it was very hard to find a buyer for the land five years ago. Now, the land is not only on high demand, but also scarce. The present case is a result of what has widely come to be known as the onion revolution attributed to Farm Concern International’s (FCI) efforts under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation...Read More

Daniel Gakuo – Onion Bulb Farmer Advances to Trainer

When Mr Daniel Gakuo initially started farming, he not only practised it out of the passion but he also dreamt of training his fellow farmers. He is realising his dream after he met Farm Concern International (FCI) through the Commercial Village Model (CVM) that brings and groups farmers together into commercial villages. Mr. Gakuo, a member of Mwiyogo Commercial village, Kieni West, Nyeri County is one of the beneficiaries of the DoHoMa intervention through FCI... Read More

Youth Commercialization Leads to Reduction of Crime

Thirty two percent of Kenya’s population consists of youth aged 25-54 but most of them are unemployed. Those from rural areas often flock to towns such as Nairobi City to look for casual jobs. Due to job scarcity some join crime. However, youths in Kieni County are prospering through farming, under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme implemented by Farm Concern International with support from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation... Read More

 

Tanzania Case Studies

Smallholder Farmer Now Trades in Millions

Yasinta, a small holder farmer from Moshi in Tanzania has flourished as a result of the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates and implemented by Farm Concern International. She was struggling to earn income from farming maize, beans, coffee, bananas, sweet potatoes and green vegetables because of low production that can be attributed to use of uncertified.. Read More

Tanzanian Youth earns USD 176 per day from Agri- business

Elias Makori joined Valeska Commercial Village in 2010 after a commercialization campaign by FCI under the Tanzania Domestic Markets Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. January 2014 was a turning point for his life when he got an order from National Milling Corporation traders to supply five bags (250kg) of African Night Shade per day for three months at TZS 60,000 (USD 35.27) per bag.. Read More

Investment in Inputs Bears Fruit for a family in Manyire Village

The introduction of Domestic Markets Regional Programme implemented by Farm Concern International and funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in Tanzania marked a life time transformation to Vincent and his family.Since 2011, Vincent has been regularly attending FCI trainings on good agronomic practices such as spacing, use of quality improved seed, fertilizer and early planting.. Read More

Production triples after adoption of GAP

Rodgers & Beatrice (husband and wife) own three acres of land in Arusha region of Tanzania. They are among thousands of farmers who have benefitted from FCI intervention under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. They have experienced an increase in production of vegetables and maize as a result of adoption of Good Agronomic Practices. Read More

Smallholder Farmer Doubles Crop Yields

From the adoption of proper African eggplant growing methods, Simon Daniel is now harvesting twice the number of bags he used to harvest. In the past three years, he has been harvesting about 384 bags (of 35kg each) of African eggplant per ½ an acre in every year, compared to the 192 bags he used to harvest before, after he learned the principles to apply in order to result in maximum yields. He sold the 384 bags at an average of TZS 7,000 per bag, making TZS 2,688,000 (USD 1,580.27) per year, per ½ an acre.. Read More

Mary Reuben: Adoption of NRM as a Result of FCI Interventions

Who says that small holder farmers cannot adopt innovations and technologies? The story of Mary Reuben and her family from Manyire Commercial Village located South East of Arusha in Tanzania proves the deference. This was made possible after capacity building by Farm Concern International under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Anyone visiting her premises will agree that she has done her best in making her environment green with various plants. Mary has strategically planted her farm with 70 avocado trees, a few mandarin and orange trees, and 200 timber trees..  Read More

Farmer Makes Millions from Seed Multiplication Business Venture

In three years working with Farm Concern International (FCI) under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme supported by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Daniel Lekwana has purchased a second-hand Massey Ferguson tractor worth TZS 13 Million (USD 6,270.26) and paid over TZS 3 million (USD 1,446.98) in school fees for his children! Daniel Lekwama is a smallholder farmer from Arusha, Tanzania. Before he met FCI, he could not sufficiently cater for his family. His narrative changed in July 2012 when he attended a nutritional training forum conducted by FCI on cultivation of Traditional African Vegetables (TAVs) at Majimoto Commercial Village. Read More

From Firewood to Biogas

Witness Kileo is a wife and a mother of five children living in Kashashi village, 51 kilometres from Moshi town, Tanzania. Her family owns eight acres of land; five of the acres are dedicated to agriculture. For over 20 years, Kileo grew maize, beans and coffee. She however faced numerous challenges like low yields as a result of poor agronomic practices. When FCI held a trade fair in her village in 2013, she learnt from one of the exhibitors, Centre for Agricultural Mechanization and Rural Technology (CAMARTEC), who install biogas, about the benefits of biogas. She learnt that biogas converts organic household waste into gas for cooking and lighting and that it is faster and easier to use as opposed to charcoal or firewood.. Read More

Farmers shift from traditional crops to nutritious Traditional African Vegetables

Mrs Dinasi Naibala from Manyire Commercial Village in Arusha is reaping enormous benefits from the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and implemented by FCI. Dinasi makes more profit from growing Traditional African Vegetables compared to staple crops.At Manyire village, Mrs Dinasi Naibala has just concluded a sale, right there in her rain soaked-vegetable farm. The traders came calling earlier during the day from Arusha town, and paid her the pre-agreed price of Tsh 15,000-Tsh 30,000 (USD 9.5-USD 19) per 50 kilogramme bag of African eggplant, a traditional dark purplish fruit vegetable that is highly valued in the fresh produce markets in Arusha and Dar es Salaam, and in the local markets along Tanzania-Kenya northern border..Read More

Malawi Case Studies

Collective Marketing earns Mr. Mitengo Felix USD 5,120 annually.

Mitengo Felix had been growing maize as staple crop for a long time but had no interest in growing Irish potatoes until he attended commercialization campaigns by Farm Concern International, FCI under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. In 2011 Felix registered with Khasu pasogolo Commercial Producer group (CPG) under the Chisinkha Commercial Village (CV) but he was still sceptical about the success of the irish potato venture and therefore did not cultivate anything... Read More

Monthly traded volumes increase by 100% as a result of collective sourcing from Commercial Villages

Mr. Khoswe sells onions and tomatoes and cabbages during peak seasons at Thondwe Market. He could not procure enough volumes until he was linked to Commercial Villages (CVs) by Farm Concern International, FCI under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Mr Khoswe cherishes the exposure and training on business planning and development by FCI which has enhanced his capacity to procure produce and manage and grow his business...Read More

Mgwirizano CPG members realize 186% production increase after adoption of collective action

Farmers from Chinthebe village grew Irish potatoes but not for commercial purposes with   an average household planting 0.2 acres. In 2011, Farm Concern International, FCI under the Domestic Markets Regional Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation mobilized Chinthebe village farmers to form Commercial Villages (CV) as part of its Irish potato commercialization intervention...Read More

Cashing in from Traditional African Vegetable Seed Multiplication

Traditional African Vegetables (TAVs) have become a lucrative business in Zomba, Malawi; a result of TAVs commercialization campaigns by Farm Concern International, FCI under the Malawi Domestic Markets Programme which is funded by Bill and Melinda Gates oundation. Ganazio has been growing maize and other vegetables for years and when Farm Concern International introduced TAVs farming, he was selected to be one of the 20 seed multipliers for Commercial Villages...Read More

Rwanda Case Studies

Village Business Forums earn Charles Sekazuba reliable market.

Charles Sekazuba, a resident of Kinigi in the Northwest of Rwanda, cultivated Irish potatoes but brokers (middlemen) and transporters gave him wrong market information on market prices and benefitted more from his hard earned produce. Yields from his farm were sold without grading, in the most cases as a mixture of good, medium and bad quality which affecting the prices and his revenues negatively.... Read More

Linkage to Commercial Villages helps Ayinkamiye triple the volume traded daily.

There is one open market that operates at night in Kigali and that is the Irish Potato market on the outskirts of Kigali City. In the poorly lit night of Kigali suburb of Gitikinyoni competition played out as brokers and wholesale traders jostled for Irish potatoes. “Produce suppliers would spend the night at Rulindo so they could be at the market by two in the morning” says Ayinkamiye Marie Therese, one of the Irish potatoes traders in Kabuga Produce Market on the outskirts of Kigali city.... Read More

Dufatanye Commercial Producer Group access Kigali Markets through Village Business Forums.

Dufatanye Commercial Producer Group (CPG) is an Irish potato Farmers’ Cooperative from Nyarubande Cell in the Northern Province of Rwanda. Dufatanye CPG is made up of 53 members and owns 62 acres of land for Irish Potato growing. The CPG was formed after commercialization Campaigns by Farm Concern International, FCI under the Rwanda Domestic Markets Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.... Read More

Farmer-Trader Business partnerships that change lives.

Kimironko market is a newly built market in the east of Kigali City that sells different consumer products including fresh foods. It serves the upscale suburbs of Kigali and is known for providing good quality fresh produce including Irish potatoes used in Hotels, Kiosks, Restaurants and Bars. Many of its clients want quality and are willing to pay for it. Good quality Irish Potatoes however are grown in Kinigi and before the intervention of Farm Concern International, FCI under the Rwanda Domestic Markets Programme funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, it was difficult for traders to get the quality they wanted.... Read More

Category: Interventions
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FCI VISION : To have commercialized smallholder communities with increased incomes for improved, stabilized & sustainable livelihoods in Africa and beyond