MasterCard targets smallholder farmers with $25 million AgriFin Accelerate program

Around 1 billion people in rural areas around the world live on less than US$1.25 a day including nearly 500 million smallholder farmers (SHF) who provide 80% of the food for the developing world. For the 70 million smallholder farmers living in Sub Saharan Africa, farm productivity is only 56% of the world’s average.

This is due to a range of risk factors, including weak infrastructure, poor market linkages and lack of access to information and critical services including finance, inputs and extension, as well as a wide range of social factors.

Details of the ALE are as follows:

  • When – Tuesday, January 29, 2019
  • Time – 7am
  • Venue – Radisson Blu – Mt. Kenya 2 Room

SHFs are the most underserved group in the world by financial services, with women and youth at a particular disadvantage. Investment in this sector is critical, as economic growth from agriculture is at least twice as effective in reducing poverty as growth in other sectors. At an estimated US $450 billion, the global demand for smallholder agricultural finance is largely unmet. Impact-driven agricultural lenders are estimated to reach no more than two percent of demand.

The AgriFin Accelerate (AFA) program, a US $25 million program funded by the MasterCard Foundation, seeks to address the inclusion gap for smallholder farmers (SHF) who lack access to affordable, accessible, demand-driven financial products and services that drive higher productivity and income for farm families. Every year, AFA holds an annual learning event (ALE) for various stakeholders, to share experiences in executing financial inclusion initiatives involving SHF.

The ALE is held to disseminate lessons learned throughout the preceding year in the program, and influence ecosystem change according to the program’s theory of change. This year’s event is themed – Driving Active Use in a Digital World. We will have a smart marketplace with companies/ farmers who are utilizing technology to scale their business.

Leave a Reply

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.