Food loss occurs mostly at the production and post-harvest stages while food waste typically takes place at the retailer and consumer end of the food chain. In broad terms, food loss and waste is influenced by production and processing choices, patterns and technologies, internal infrastructure and capacity, marketing chains and channels for distribution, consumer purchasing and food practices.
Most rural farmers in Nigeria have been engaged in Subsistence farming, thus producing enough to feed the family and thereafter, the residue is passed on to the farm-market for sales. There has never been a conscious means of forward distribution of produce gotten at the end of a farming season, for farmer in rural areas of Nigeria.
Promote Green Initiative (PROGNI) seeks to reduce food loss at harvest stage through enlightening rural farmers especially youth and women small scale farmers on effective strategies for achieving healthy and nutritious farm produce and also bridge the distribution gap of farm produce between farmers and buyers.
A major focus of the PROGNI project will be to set-up a long term agricultural produce cooperative, serving to take the produce out of the hands of the farmers, produce and process some of the farm produce, and sell some items at low prices to low income earners.
Fresh & Young Brains Development Initiative (FBIN) and Alexijan Consults will integrate lessons from our current Youth Farm (YFarm) project into PROGNI project and establish a unique and farmer-friendly distribution hub that will have a core staff strength populated by rural and vulnerable youth and women who will be put through a quasi-managerial farmer outreach induction/training that teaches them to understand the essence of the value chain system as envisaged in the CAADAP principles.
Fresh & Young Brains Development Initiative (FBIN) and Alexijan Consults through our impactful YFarm and LeaveNoYouth Behind projects have over the years engaged with youth and women farmers across Nigeria, educating them on agribusiness, agricultural value chain, climate smart agriculture, agricultural waste to wealth, gender & leadership and personal development. Hence, the first part of this project will be a capacity needs assessment and bootcamp organized for rural farmers in different communities educating them on best practices to for planting crops that will yield good and healthy harvest.
Through this project, we intend to bridge the gap by creating market links which connects rural farmers to the market. There will also be a farm produce cooperatives that buys the produce from the rural farmers and sells to potential customers (Industries). Farm produce purchased will be sorted to ascertain the durability of the produce by the quality control unit of the cooperative. A processing unit will also be set up to convert produce with short life span into processed foods or raw materials which can be easily stored and kept for a long period of time; this way, excess food loss will be avoided.
Also the distribution hub of the cooperative in a bid to promote food security, will target even distribution of food to the less privileged and low income earners in the society; whereby the farm produce purchased from rural farmers and be sold to them at a cheaper rate. They will also be privileged to access food loans by creating a platform for collecting food items on credit and paying later.
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