Post-harvest grain losses in the developing world lead to lower incomes and food insecurity among smallholder farmers. This problem is particularly acute in Sub-Saharan Africa, where post-harvest losses are estimated at US $1.6 billion per year, or about 13.5 percent of the total value of grain production. Insufficient on-farm storage often forces farmers to sell their crops right after harvest, causing a surge in supply that lowers prices for their maize. While private sector solutions to post-harvest losses exist, they are often too expensive or not accessible to smallholder farmers across the developing world.
The AgResults Kenya On-Farm Storage Pilot is a four-year, US $7.75 million pull mechanism designed to incentivize private sector companies to develop, market, and sell new, or redesigned, on-farm storage devices to smallholder farmers. The pull mechanism is technology, marketing, and distribution agnostic. Instead, companies are encouraged to consider cost and storage effectiveness for smallholder farmers, and the economic benefit to smallholder farmers and beyond.
The pilot targets two regions in Kenya: 1) The Rift Valley where 60% of the country’s maize is produced; and 2) The Eastern Region, the third largest maize-producing region in the country but experiences losses due to the large grain borer. The large grain borer is a pest that infests in grains, particularly maize, and is heavily present in the Eastern Region of Kenya.
The pilot is managed by Agribusiness Systems International (ASI).
The pull mechanism is comprised of performance-based grants provided to companies based on verified sales of approved storage devices that meet the sales threshold of 21,000 MT. The sales threshold is calculated based on the useful life of a device. The number of devices are adjusted to reflect the number of smallholder farmers in each region.
A to Z Textile Mills was founded in the 1960s to manufacture and distribute a variety of textile and plastic products serving both local and international markets. The company sells AgroZ Bag, a multi-layered hermetic bag.
GrainPro is a ‘green not-only-for-profit’ company founded in 1992 to promote safe storage and drying of grains and seeds. The company sells their SuperGrainbag, a resealable ultra-hermetic bag with an airtight single track zipper to preserve freshness.
Bell Industries is an agro-business, health products and solutions company that works to help farmers increase yields and grow profits. The company sells PICS bags, chemical free grain storage bags to prevent post-harvest losses of all dry grains.
CBF Limited is a supplier and distributor of Vestergaard Products in Kenya. The company sells their ZeroFly Storage Bag, an insecticide-incorporated woven polypropylene bag developed for post-harvest storage of commodities.
Ekima Engineering Works has been in business since 2004 and trains local artisans in the design, fabrication, and marketing of the metal silos throughout Kenya. The company fabricates its metal grain silos at a specialized workshop in Machakos and sells various sizes of silos used by smallholder farmer.
Elite Innovations was founded in 2014 as a social enterprise to promote improved grain storage in order to mitigate post-harvest losses. The company focuses on selling hermetic bags known as “Elite Bags”.
Kentainers was founded in 1989 in order to deliver practical and affordable products to improve water management, food production and storage, amongst others for both rural and urban consumers across Kenya. The company sells their GrainSilo, a plastic silo that is based upon a large plastic tank design.
KPMC is a value chain service provider that brings together private and public sector players to deliver true value to smallholder farmers. The company sells their Grain Storage Bags that are multi-layered polyethylene bags that create hermetic storage conditions to prevent post-harvest losses.
Post Harvest Africa
Post Harvest Africa is a Kenyan private enterprise that targets small scale farmers in Kenya and in Africa as a whole. They sell their Grainz bags that are hermetic bags that require no pesticides for grain storage so that food and chemical and insect free.
Prize Competition Inspires Development of Affordable Technologies for Smallholder Farmers (Via USAID Feed the Future)