Scaling out Agribusiness Incubation in Zambia (SAIZ)
The project will create jobs and raise income of youths and vulnerable groups through increase in productivity and linkages to the markets
I confirm that I am fully aware of the eligibility criteria, and based on its description, I am eligible to apply to the CSV Prize 2017.
AGRIBUSINESS INCUBATION TRUST (AgBIT)
Scaling (the solution has passed the previous stages and is growing its impact on a regional or global scale)
Annual budget in 2017 (USD)
Number of beneficiaries impacted so far
Nonprofit, NGO, or citizen sector
Secondary Focus Area
Headquarters location: Country
Headquarters location: City
Silverest Area, Next to SADC Plant Genetic Center, P.O. Box 310376, Lusaka, 10101
Location(s) of impact
Farmers appreciating greenhouse production technology at AgBIT Demonstration Unit
Entrepreneurship training in the incubation hall at AgBIT
A low cost greenhouse
Sorting and grading training
A seedling Farmer in Chongwe who under went the farmer cluster program
Farmers field day training at AgBIT Demonstration Unit with or partners
Farmers learning on the benefits of drip irrigation system and good farm hygiene
Problem: What problem is this initiative trying to address?
Productivity in the rural farming community is very low due to lack of technology, skills, and poor supply chain systems with no access to the formal markets. Furthermore, small holder farmers can’t meet the quality standards and food safety specifications in the vegetable industry. This has forced the rural community to remain on the periphery without participating in the huge ever growing vegetable markets led by retail chain stores leaving the youths to engage in charcoal burning there by accelerating deforestation
Solution Summary: What is the proposed solution? What do you see as its most promising aspects for creating shared value?
To address the challenges of low productivity in the rural farming communities, AgBIT shall leverage its unique strengths and experience in the provision of Agribusiness incubation services to farmers through its Farmer Cluster programme. The project will provide training with access to appropriate low cost technology in greenhouse and drip irrigation systems aimed at increasing productivity. It will also provide a comprehensive supply chain management system with linkages to the markets, develop the network of agro-dealers among farmer clusters, and improve linkages between agro-dealers and input suppliers. The project will engage an interactive learning and participatory extension approach using the lead farmer model in combination with farmer field school (demos). In addition, Farmer capacity will be built further through training's in food safety, GLOBAL GAP, quality management & post-harvest management, information management, business planning, entrepreneurship and marketing.
Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Specify both the social and the environmental impact of your work
AgBIT has been implementing an agribusiness incubation programme funded by DANIDA focused on enhancing capacities of youths, smallholder farmers and MSME business since 2012 to meet the demands of complex formal markets and access financing with financial institutions. AgBIT has since supported 730 farmers in crop production, good agricultural practices and linkage to markets using its farmer cluster model since 2013. Further, AgBIT has just successfully completed the implementation of the project (Scaling out Agribusiness Incubation in Zambia). This project has created 105 direct employments across the horticulture value chain in Shibuyunji and Mwachilele areas with two local seedling companies being registered in these communities. These farmers are currently growing for the chain store markets under contracts. Furthermore, the project has converted 70 youths from charcoal burning into becoming successful agribusiness entrepreneurs thereby reducing the levels of deforestation.
Financial sustainability plan: How is this initiative financially supported? How will you ensure its financial sustainability long-term?
This project is seeking for a grant to implement its new Business model that is trying to hasten growth in the rural horticulture sub sector. With this funding, AgBIT will use the grant to successfully create 205 direct sustainable jobs across the Horticulture value chain in Zambia by delivering practical knowledge and skills transfer to smallholder farmers and MSMEs through building their entrepreneurial and business capacity. AgBIT is looking for a 70 % financial assistance in form of grant and will make a contribution of 30%) to implement this innovative business model. AgBIT’s Agri-Park facility is equipped with greenhouses, irrigation systems, a modern fruit & vegetable cold-room, and a refrigerated truck to support the sustainability of this Business model.
Unique value proposition: What makes your initiative innovative? How does your project differ from other organizations working in the same field?
The innovation behind this project is the creation of jobs which are purely businesses run by individual entrepreneurs who are participating in a competitive market, with a securely strengthened supply chain system coupled with a multi-stakeholder involvement approach, to ensure a smooth flow of produce from farm to the consumer safely and in good quality. The business incubation process offered with hand holding business services is a unique tool in accelerating growth of smallholder farmers
Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that sparked the beginning of this initiative.
This initiative began around 2011 when the vegetable demand started growing in Zambia with the opening up of shopping malls almost in all major towns. Even though this demand was high, our local farmers couldn’t participate in the vegetable industry as they lacked knowledge on the basic good agriculture practices and information on the types of varieties most appreciated by these markets. It was then, that AgBIT was formed to take leadership in the commercialization of available technologies to increase agricultural productivity, strengthening the supply chain, linking smallholders to markets, providing strong business mentorship, and delivering quality business development services to SMEs and producers alike.
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