Our previous blog post defined the USD 2.3 trillion opportunity for SMEs and small-scale suppliers and entrepreneurs across agricultural value chains. This opportunity helped to define our vision of our world where access to capital is guided by transparent access to information.
But what does “agricultural value chain” mean and why does that matter? Some people think of agriculture and only think of farmers. But there are many businesses or stakeholders in an agricultural value chain, all of whom play an important role. Check out our handy infographic!
So, one big question for SMEs is “how can I get involved?”
Across Africa, the overall population and the middle class are growing rapidly with the middle class expected to increase to 1.1 billion or 42% by 2060. This increase means more people are eating more food: food that is imported and produced locally. However, importing food is costly especially in Africa with food accounting for around 10% of all imports. Global food manufacturers who sell in Africa would prefer to make their products in Africa to reduce risks related to foreign exchange and different currencies as well as to reduce their “carbon footprint”.
The challenge for these manufacturers, however, is not only on the capacity or how much can be produced but also on the productivity or how much can be produced in a single batch.
For SMEs, this challenge should represent the need to look deeper into how the market operates and how and where to add value and invest your own resources in the agricultural value chain.
Are you an SME already in an agricultural value chain or looking to get into one? What opportunity have you seen? Share in the comments!