Grantee: The United Nations World Food Program (WFP)
Project name: Farm to Market Alliance – “Small Holder Aggregation Center Model Concept”
Grant amount: £3,772,760.00
Project start date: 1st December 2015
Project duration: 26 months
Countries benefiting: Rwanda, Tanzania and Zambia
Description of the organization:
WFP is the food aid arm of the United Nations system. Food aid is one of the many instruments that can help to promote food security, which is defined as access of all people at all times to the food needed for an active and healthy life. ¹ The policies governing the use of World Food Programme food aid must be oriented towards the objective of eradicating hunger and poverty. The ultimate objective of food aid should be the elimination of the need for food aid.
Farm to Market Alliance seeks to build a structured grain market which links smallholder farmers to formal markets locally and regionally. This will be achieved by promoting a demand driven platform and strengthening farmers’ resilience through selling in structured markets. The project will develop aggregation centers for smallholder farmers, using EAC standards, for the 28 Farmer Organisations under the World Food Programme (WFP) in Tanzania. The aggregation centers will serve as a multi-faceted platform. The project will link smallholder farmers in Tanzania to grain buyers across East Africa through a networked and structured market mechanism. The project’s 3 key initiatives are to increase food security, income and improve regional trade. It will do so by reducing transactional costs and systemic barriers while strengthening staple value chains. Reduction in transaction costs will take place by organising farmers (both P4P and non-P4P) into groups for bulk input, training farmers in a central location and providing market information. The centers will also remove systemic barriers i.e. guaranteed markets by ensuring large buyers provide forward contracts to the FO’s. The Centers will strengthen the staple value chain by ensuring “Grade A” maize through the use of mechanised equipment and proper training. The system will allow large scale private buyers under WFP’s Farm to Market Alliance to buy directly from the smallholder farmers. WFP’s regional procurement, from this initiative, will be infused into the “G-Soko” platform through its Regional Procurement strategy. The project will raise awareness and understanding of grades and standards for traded grains/beans; establish and strengthen appropriate post-harvest practices that improve food quality and safety.