Reducing African farmers post harvest losses
MicroEnterprise Africa runs a social enterprise farm which works with neighbouring subsistence farmers sharing its resources and markets. Subsistence farmers lose a lot of their harvest due to insects and pests. We want to build a large warehouse to store their harvest before transport to market.
March 2013 - September 2013
African farmers frequently have low yields due to poor farming techniques and lack of fertiliser. An additional cause of low yields is losses from termites and pests following harvest. to We aim to reduce the post harvest losses of subsistence farmers. This can be as much as 40% of the crop.
The charity runs a commercial farm which works with smallholders and shares its resources and markets. We also collect smallholder produce and transport it to markets. We want to improve our storage capacity by building a large secure warehouse which will also have additional training facilities
Reduce post harvest losses from pests and thieves
Activities» We will plan the building of a modern warehouse using latest building techniques and solar powered lighting
» We will build the warehouse under expert supervision
Success will be demonstrated by comparing the crop yields being higher than those measured in our baseline measurements.
Increase the income of subsistence farmers which are generally below the poverty line.
Activities» By collecting and storing subsistence farmers produce in secure place we will reduce their post harvest losses
Success will be measured by the amount of income each farmer receives from the market..
Raise the level of knowledge of subsistence farmers through training and awareness sessions.
Activities» We will annex a small training centre next to the warehouse. We will use this to supplement our existing training activities
Subsistence farmers are one of the poorest groups in Malawian society and our long term aim is to increase the standard of living of this group through improved farming methods. We monitor this through independent annual assessments of household income
The major risk is that we design and plan the building badly. We will use a leading firm of architects in the UK who has experience of this work to advise on a pro bono basis. We will also use an experience firm of builders in Malawi who we have used before
We will publish progress on our website and funders of this project will also receive a monthly email. Individuals are also welcome to visit the project
Budget - Project Cost: £32,000Loading graph....
Amount Heading Description £5,500 Planning Design and monitoring build £23,000 Build Building £3,500 Electrics Solar power
Current Funding / Pledges
Source Amount Ian Marshall £5,000 Guaranteed
The location is in Kasungu which is a town in the centre of Malawi
We will be working with 50 smallholder groups, each with around 15 farmers in a group. On the assumption of 6 people in a household around 4500 people will benefit. Over 90% of these families are below the extreme poverty line
We are best placed to carry out this project because we have established a commercial farm which is committed to work alongside and improve the lot of subsistence farmers The farm is jointly owned by local Malawians and the charity invests all surplus cash into its work with smallholders. No money goes to any paid staff in the UK.
Read more about the Charity running this project.
Ian is chair of the UK charity and is its major donor.
Martha is director of the farm in Malawi and leads its work there
Josh is a UK trustee and an expert in African development