Project Objective

The Farm to Market Alliance (formerly known as Patient Procurement Platform) is a public-private sector led consortium of organisations seeking to transform food value chains in emerging markets by building a demand-led value-chain based on  long-term linkages between suppliers (farmers), buyers and other key market players such as suppliers of finance, inputs and technical expertise. The aim is to actively engage smallholders, increase their productivity, profitability and resilience and their strength as reliable market players.  Buyers enter into stable buying relationships with smallholder farmers - typically through contracts extending beyond one season.   Smallholders use this stability in demand as collateral to access finance used for seeds, fertilizer and machinery to improve  their productivity and incomes. More productive farmers reduce business risk for companies wanting to invest in farming, thus increasing demand for farmers.   The more demand the farmers have, the more they can finance productivity improvements - the more productive they are, the more demand increases.

Grow Africa is among eight entities that have committed to participate in the global consortium. The others are: Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA); Bayer Crop Science AG; International Finance Corporation; Syngenta Crop Protection AG; Rabobank; WFP; and Yara International ASA. With the Platform’s 2015 launch in Rwanda, Tanzania and Zambia, eleven buyers have signed contracts with over 65,000 Platform farmers to purchase 85,000 MT of predominately cow peas, maize, pigeon peas and soya beans. The ultimate aim is to reach 250,000 smallholder farmers with pre-planting procurement contracts signed with large-scale buyers via systematic engagement in markets over three years. In 2016, the Platform will be launched in two additional countries.

The consortium is organised through a global Project Board, with members of the eight consortium members leading working groups on defined topics. In-country work in Tanzania, Rwanda and Zambia is currently led by local WFP teams, supported by the global Project Board. Grow Africa leads the working group on communications and is a member of two other working groups, M&E and extension.

By the end of 2015, 30 off-take contracts had been signed for over 21,000 metric tons of maize and pulses, procured from over 25,000 farmers. In Rwanda, 47 off-take contracts were signed for just over 8,000 metric tons of maize and beans, procured from over 17,000 farmers, almost 50% of them women. 

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International organisations signed an MoU to support a Patient Procurement Platform to shift one million farmers in 25 countries.