Brokering New Partnerships for Inclusive Horticulture Supply Chains
Buyers in Egypt’s horticulture market system often rely on traders to source produce from farmers. However, there is rarely transparency in the supply chain as few buyers have relationships with farmers or producer organizations. The Feed the Future Egypt Rural Agribusiness Strengthening project works to expand interactions between high-end buyers and smallholder farmers, fostering commercial linkages between producer organizations and buyers and enabling farmers to meet the needs of those buyers through certifications or other specifications. The project also engages in capacity building to help farmers switch from growing traditional crops to high-value, low-water consumption cash crops. In turn, buyers learn that, with some assistance, they can help farmers meet their requirements and access higher quality crops.
As of December 2020, the project had facilitated 39 linkages between producer organizations and buyers and nine between producer organizations and input suppliers. Most notably, the project partners with PepsiCo Egypt, the country’s largest potato chip producer, to improve farmer capacity to produce high-quality potatoes and empower women through a $20 million USAID global initiative.
These partnerships are shifting mindsets for buyers, input suppliers and farmers, emphasizing the value of collaboration and transparency in the supply chain. As a result of the partnership with PepsiCo, farm-level productivity among participating organization members increased by 100%. Successful partnerships with high-profile agribusinesses are models that the project is encouraging other buyers and input suppliers to adopt. The project is also developing a pilot in which certified suppliers and buyers work together to provide technical assistance and services to smallholders.
To learn more about the project’s efforts to link smallholder farmers with buyers and input suppliers, check out the Feed the Future Egypt Rural Agribusiness Strengthening Project Technical Brief.