28th April 2017
Syngenta and USAID/Feed the Future Invest $1.8 million to help Smallholder Farmers in Zambia
Lusaka, Zambia – Syngenta in Zambia, through its subsidiary MRI Seed, has partnered with the Feed the Future Partnering for Innovation, a United States Agency for International Development (USAID) programme implemented by Fintrac Inc., to help smallholder farmers gain access to high-quality, disease-free horticultural seedlings, giving them the opportunity to become commercially viable vegetable farmers.
The programme aims to build a sustainable seedling distribution model for hybrid vegetables; provide access to market information and linkages; train farmers on good agricultural practices and business management; and introduce new technologies to help smallholder farmers dramatically improve their yields.
In 20 districts across Zambia, Syngenta will establish 20 seedling production sites, each owned and operated by an Entrepreneurial Young Plant Raiser (YPR). The YPR will provide business and technical training, as well as facilitate market linkages for the benefit of 12,000 smallholder farmers. Although the primary focus of the project will be on tomato and cabbage seedlings, Syngenta will also conduct trials and testing regarding the commercial viability of other crops with a high potential in Zambia such as kale (rape), cauliflower, broccoli, carrot, and potato.
Furthermore, Syngenta will help in promoting a pilot programme for YPR’s “Vegetable in a Bag” concept, where a small portion of YPR seedlings will be sold in reusable packaging, with no ground soil and minimal water, making them suitable for urban and peri-urban use.
“For Syngenta, smallholder farmers around the world and in Zambia are key to solving the growing gap between the supply and demand for affordable food. Our partnership with USAID focuses on testing the commercial viability of innovative business models designed to enable smallholder farmers in Zambia to increase their output and thus their profitability whilst using sustainable and safe agricultural practices. This is what Syngenta’s Good Growth Plan is ultimately all about, and one that we have proven through the Community Agro Dealer initiative in Zambia over the last years.” - Mark Stokes, Head of Consumer Marketing for Syngenta Zambia.
About the Partners
Feed the Future Partnering for Innovation
Feed the Future Partnering for Innovation is a United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funded programme that helps the private sector to scale and market agricultural technologies and services for smallholder farmers through investing in technology commercialisation and knowledge exchange. Partnering for Innovation and USAID/Zambia aim to develop partnerships with private sector agribusinesses to support smallholder farmers in Zambia. USAID/Zambia, through Partnering for Innovation, has partnered and co-funded four investments with the private sector to address development and business challenges in Zambia. Through these activities and investments, smallholder farmers will benefit from new and/or expanded market opportunities, increased access to improved agricultural inputs and mechanization, and better quality technical advisory services.
USAID is the lead U.S. Government agency working around the world to end extreme poverty and enable resilient, democratic societies to realize their potential. In order to support these goals, President John. F. Kennedy created the United States Agency for International Development by executive order in 1961. Currently active in over 100 countries worldwide, USAID was born out of a spirit of progress and innovation, reflecting American values and character, and motivated by a fundamental belief in doing the right thing. Today, USAID staff work to further America's foreign policy interests in expanding democracy and free markets while also extending a helping hand to people struggling to make a better life, recover from a disaster or striving to live in a free and democratic country.
Syngenta is a leading agriculture company helping to improve global food security by enabling millions of farmers to make better use of available resources. Through world class science and innovative crop solutions, our 28,000 people in over 90 countries are working to transform how crops are grown. We are committed to rescuing land from degradation, enhancing biodiversity and revitalizing rural communities.
Syngenta has been working in Africa and the Middle East for over half a century in more than 50 countries, and we understand the critical role farming plays in economic, environmental and social development across this diverse region. Our ambition is to support the inclusion of farmers into viable value chains to increase their productivity so that they produce more of what local and global markets want. We strive to transform farmer yields at scale, in a way that creates sustainable value - motivated by the belief that successful farmers grow surpluses for sale, generate income, provide quality food and build vibrant communities.
In Zambia, Syngenta is working to provide farmers in remote locations with last-mile access to inputs, know-how and market information. This is done through a system of Community Agro Dealers (CADs).Over 100 local entrepreneurs in remote locations whose small shops provide access to high quality seeds, crop protection products, serve as produce aggregation hubs, and offer agronomic training through adjacent demonstration plots. This approach overcomes market access barriers and builds local entrepreneur networks.
To learn more visit www.syngenta.com and www.goodgrowthplan.com . Follow us on Twitter® at www.twitter.com/Syngenta .
Fintrac, a woman-owned and US-based consulting company, develops agricultural solutions to end hunger and poverty. For 25 years, it has worked with local and international partners to increase production, improve postharvest handling, add value, and develop markets and competitive value chains for the world's most vulnerable farmers and communities. By teaching farmers to view farming as a business, Fintrac increases yields to improve nutrition, generate income, and build industries.