Nigeria Breweries has signed a 3- year agreement to strengthen the participation of smallholder farmers in the local economy in sub-saharan Africa Naijaagronet news gathered.
The PPP agreement which will be implemented by a consortium comprising IFDC,ICRA and Boplnc is part of a Dutch funded initiative known as 2SCALE aimed at improving rural livelihoods and food security in Africa.
Netherlands Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Lilianne Ploumen who attended the signing of the MoU in Nigeria recently, as part of her trade mission with leading Dutch businesses, said: "HEINEKEN's decision to take part in a programme like 2SCALE proves there are real opportunities in Africa for the Dutch private sector and enjoined more Dutch companies to invest in Nigeria and Africa.
Managing Director, Nigerian Breweries, Nico Vervelde noted that the MoU was part of Nigerian Breweries' ambition to support local economic development and promote inclusive growth by sourcing agricultural raw materials, like cassava, locally from Small and Medium Scale Enterprises, SMEs.
“Through our partnership with Psaltry, we are taking a big step towards further realising this ambition”, he said.
On 2SCALES’s participation in the PPP, business developer in 2SCALE, Niek van Dijk, stated that the program was aimed at empowering many people adding that “we see small-scale farmers as potential entrepreneurs that can add value to both local markets as well as Dutch companies. It is not philanthropy for companies to do business with small-scale farmers, it's an opportunity to grow for all parties and we are very pleased that Nigerian Breweries is supporting this initiative".
Under the terms of the MoU, the partners will work together to support small-scale farmers in the production of more and better cassava through technical assistance, training and easier access to finance. The PPP will enable more smallholder farmers to participate in the market for processed cassava products and will allow, Nigerian Breweries to increase the amount of locally grown cassava products used in their local beers.
The PPP also supports HEINEKEN's commitment to deliver 60 % of its African raw materials requirements via local sourcing by 2020.