Developing the Microfinance Movement for Smallholder Farmers
Friday, October 25, 2013
Financing is essential to help farmers access farm inputs and training to grow more food. One Acre Fund uses a simple four-part operating model to serve smallholder farmers. We provide farmers with improved seed and fertilizer for staple crop production, financing through in-kind loans, on-farm agriculture trainings, and post-harvest assistance through improved storage and market facilitation.
One Acre Fund currently serves 135,000 farmers in East Africa, but the need for greater farm financing is vast. The global demand for smallholder farmer finance is $300 billion, and the current global supply is between $20 and $30 billion, according to research done by the Initiative for Smallholder Finance.
To help address this need, the MasterCard Foundation and One Acre Fund recently launched a $10 million partnership designed to help smallholder farmers in Kenya, Rwanda, and Burundi access financial services and training. Importantly, the partnership will support our efforts to build a farm microfinance movement. We aim to spark the interest of microfinance institutions to expand successfully into rural areas, and we plan to help them develop the tools they need to do so.