CNFA’s Farmer-to-Farmer program is excited to be involved in the Agrilinks Blog Carnival from July 14 – July 18. Each day this week we will be submitting new blog posts that focus on first-hand experience of CNFA F2F volunteers, food security issues in the F2F field and the importance of volunteer assignments. Please tune in to our blog this week for some great information coming from our volunteers and staff!

CNFA’s Farmer-to-Famer Program in Southern Africa:

CNFA implements F2F in Southern Africa in Malawi, Mozambique and Angola. We use a value chain approach in order to focus resources and more effectively build linkages between industry stakeholders. CNFA utilizes expert volunteers and staff to provide technical assistance in pursuit of the following F2F objectives:

  • Increase agricultural sector productivity and profitability: CNFA’s strategic approach is founded on increasing smallholder productivity and profitability by targeting high-potential value chains in each target country.
  • Improve conservation and sustainable use of environmental and natural resources: CNFA balances increased agricultural productivity and production with improved conservation and sustainable resource use. Examples of potential volunteer roles include: water management including water retention and water multi usage, integrated pest management (IPM) and integrated soil fertility management.
  • Expand agricultural sector access to financial services: CNFA links smallholder farmer organizations and SMEs with credit via appropriate channels, including microfinance institutions, banks, supplier credit, leasing, equity investment and blended capital from an increasing number of impact investors.
  • Strengthen agricultural sector institutions: CNFA strengthens farmer organizations, including cooperatives and associations, local NGOs, industry associations that support improved input supply and agricultural universities.

The F2F Program in Southern Africa will accomplish the following:

  • Field 310 volunteer assignments
  • Assist 116 host organizations
  • 9,300 individuals will be trained, including 3,700 women
  • Generate $9.3 million in increased gross sales
  • Generate $4.6 million in increased net annual income by hosts

CNFA at a glance:

Established in 1985, CNFA has managed more than $474 million in donor-funded agricultural development programs in 42 countries worldwide. Currently, CNFA implements the Farmer-to-Farmer program in Southern Africa (Angola, Malawi and Mozambique) and has fielded nearly 1,500 volunteers to Africa and Eastern Europe over the past 13 years.

Where do we come from?

Since the beginning, CNFA has been dedicated to stimulating economic growth and improving rural livelihoods in the developing world by empowering the private sector. In the early 1990s, CNFA was heavily involved in helping the Newly Independent States of the former Soviet Union build free market systems through public-private partnerships. Throughout its 29 years, CNFA has expanded its presence to Africa, Southeast Asia and the Middle East and continues to implement market-driven programs that encourage entrepreneurship and private enterprise.

What are our goals?

CNFA empowers people by giving them the tools and confidence they need to improve their lives through enterprise-based agriculture development initiatives designed to facilitate market access, enhance agribusiness competitiveness, increase productivity and improve access to inputs and credit. All of these contribute to a higher income and a better quality of life.

How do we do it?

CNFA uses a variety of methods to help smallholder farmers and pastoralists acquire access to higher-value markets, generate increased profits and improve their food security and nutritional status.

CNFA’s core capabilities are:

  • Productivity, Food Security and Nutrition
  • Input Supply and Farm Services
  • Economic Resilience and Rapid Recovery
  • Value Chain Development
  • Volunteer Technical Assistance
  • Access to Finance

What are some of our successes?

  • The Commercial Farm Service Program (CFSP) in Ethiopia officially opened a network of six Farm Service Centers.  These Farm Service Centers, the first of its kind in Ethiopia, serve as one-stop-shops that provide smallholder farmers with high-quality agricultural and veterinary inputs, services and technologies that help them produce surpluses and become better linked to end markets. CFSP adapts CNFA’s market-oriented private sector model that has been proven successful in Afghanistan, Georgia, Moldova and Romania.
  • The Agro-Input Retailers’ Network (AIRN) was established under the USAID Agro-Inputs Project (AIP) to support agricultural input retailers committed to selling high-quality products in southern Bangladesh. AIRN members enjoy services including technical training on use of best agricultural inputs, improved knowledge and skills through study tours and strengthened business connections with input supply companies.  AIP will help more than one million farmers and generate $100 million in sales in the retail sector.
  • In Georgia, the Restoring Efficiency to Agricultural Production (REAP) is increasing incomes and employment in rural areas by delivering firm-level investment and technical assistant to agribusiness enterprises that provide inputs, services, training and cash markets to smallholders.  This five-year project, which began in September 2013, is catalyzing increased private investment and commercial finance to the agricultural sector and mitigating risk for rural SMEs and entrepreneurs.
  • The Zaytun Project utilized an integrated value-chain approach to increase employment and incomes in Egypt across the table olive and olive oil value chains by improving the competitiveness of producers and processors.   The program created 600 new jobs and generated more than $11 million in sales by beneficiary farmers and processors.

As aligned with Feed the Future, the U.S. Government’s global hunger and food security initiative, F2F works to support inclusive agriculture sector growth, facilitate private sector engagement in the agriculture sector, enhance development of local capacity and promote climate-smart development. Volunteer assignments address host-led priorities to expand economic growth that increases incomes and improves access to nutritious food.  Read more articles on this topic on Agrilinks. Also, make sure to subscribe to receive a daily digest in your inbox, for one week only!