Inclusive Agribusiness: Linking Farmers to Consumers

Nairobi, Kenya | November 25-29, 2019

Register Online


About the Training Workshop


A group of African farmers are producing a commodity, but every season they struggle to access the needed inputs – improved seeds, quality fertilizers and crop protection products – at the right time, in the right quantity and quality, in reasonable proximity to their farms and for a reasonable price. They often do not have the needed cash or credit to pay for the inputs. After harvest, the farmers struggle to sell their goods. Often, they have no choice but to sell their produce at the local market for a low price. They are not organized and do not have the capacity either to negotiate for better prices, or to store their produce until prices increase. Even the basic options needed to add value are beyond their reach.

The story above is an underlying problem statement of many project proposals with the objective to link farmers to markets through the increasingly popular commodity value chain approach, in which the consumer market drives the value chain. Based on IFDC’s experiences in Africa during the last 35 years, market demand is a major driver but will only lead to increased productivity, food security, and welfare if combined with other market components that drive the value chain. Through many projects in Africa and other parts of the world, IFDC and partner organizations have developed a successful approach to organize and empower farmers and to effectively link them to consumers.

IFDC’s Competitive Agricultural Systems and Enterprises (CASE) approach develops ‘agribusiness clusters’ in which producer groups become an integral part of commodity value chains. Through support from Business Development Services, linkages among various value chain actors (input providers, producers, storage providers, processors, credit institutions, buyers) are established to effectively link farmers to markets. Profitability and sustainability are key elements of IFDC’s approach; the underlying concept that “all actors in a business cluster are able to generate additional revenue” is the basis for sustainability, both in economic and environmental terms. The IFDC approach is farmer-centered and assists farmers in identifying and accessing profitable markets with an important role for farmer groups/organizations and with an additional focus on information management.

Drawing from IFDC’s and its partners’ experience with the successful 2SCALE program, this workshop will focus on 2SCALE successes in setting up and supporting partnership and business models with significant potential to attract and employ the youth, to engage and empower women, and to improve food and nutrition security, both at grassroots level and at the consumer end of the value chain.


The workshop will employ various teaching styles to ensure participants get the most out of the training. There will be plenary sessions, interactive work sessions on cases studies, group discussions, exchange on learning and experiences, and a field visit.

This workshop will be presented in English, though a French version is planned for February 2020.



During the program participants will:
  • Discuss and learn the theory and principles behind entrepreneurial farmer to consumer linkages and draw on lessons and cases of 2SCALE and Market System Development partner organization.
  • Develop demand driven BoP consumer marketing & distribution business models based on the experience of two successful cases in Ethiopia and Kenya.
  • Understand the role of the Producer as an entrepreneur as an integral part of the commodity value chain based on the Competitive Agricultural Systems and Enterprises (CASE) approach.
  • Discuss the drivers of inclusive business development based on the experience of a business champion and the development of impact pathways.
  • Create a network to facilitate future exchanges and joint proposal development.

Program Content

The program is composed of four main pillars and onsite learning based on cases in Meru county.

  • Different principles of farmer-consumer linkages, creating added value in partnerships based on demand of low income consumers at the Base of the Pyramid.
  • Demand driven BoP consumer marketing and distribution.
  • Strengthening the producer as entrepreneur and as cluster.
  • Private sector partners as driver of inclusive business development.

Field Visit

View of Mount Kenya

Participants will travel to Meru County, up North of Mount Kenya, we will visit and work on some of 2SCALE partnerships as a case, focusing on Base of Pyramid Consumer demand and working in partnership with AgriBusiness Cluster. 2SCALE offers a range of support services to private partners – companies and farmer groups – enabling them to produce, transform and supply quality food products to local, national and regional end-user markets, including Base of the Pyramid consumers.


The team will visit one of the successful private sector partners 2SCALE worked with, Shalem Investments in Meru, Kenya. Shalem’s partnership supports smallholder farmers with improved technologies, extension advice, and access to credit, linked to production contracts with the lead firm. Shalem developed a nutritious product based on consumer demand and diversified its market, initially centred on sorghum supply for beer manufacturers, and animal feed. Shalem works with an expanding number of agribusiness clusters  (32 at the moment, with 26,413 smallholder farmers, of which 14,917 women) all located in the main sorghum growing areas of Meru and Tharaka Nithi counties.

Who Should Attend

The training program is aimed at professionals from both the private and public sectors who have a specific interest in farmer to consumer linkages in a market system development approach:

  • Agribusiness dealing with sourcing raw material, processors, value addition, exporters and importers, agro-dealers.
  • Producer groups – organizations and trade association.
  • Government officials dealing with formulating and implementing private sector development, food & nutrition security, agricultural and trade policies.
  • Research Centers, Food scientists, Innovators, Nutritionists, consumer driven organizations, marketing activation companies focusing on low income consumers.
  • Service providers such as financial institutions, insurance companies, mobile phone services, ICT platform solutions, market information services, business development services.
  • Representatives of national and international organization involved in demand-driven market system development.

Tentative Program

Day Activity
Monday, Nov. 25th


Introduction of the theme “Linking Farmers to BoP consumers” based on IFDC 2SCALE program and the Market System Development approach.

2 Break-out sessions, working on theory and perception

Monday, Nov. 25th


Introduction “Develop demand driven BoP consumer marketing & distribution”

2 Break-out sessions, working on BoP marketing approaches and BoP distribution models

Tuesday, Nov. 26th


Introduction “Develop and strengthen the producer as entrepreneur as integral part of the commodity value chain, building AgriBusiness Clusters”

2 Break-out sessions, working on the CASE approach and Business Support Services

Tuesday, Nov. 26th


Introduction “Engage with or as private sector partners as driver of inclusive business development”

2 Break-out sessions, Lead role as business champion and deliver impact based on impact pathways

Wednesday, Nov. 27th


Travel to Meru County with stop over for coffee and group picture at Mount Kenya
Wednesday, Nov. 27th


Field visit and workshop of one of 2SCALE partners focusing on BoP consumer (topics: consumer market insights, product development, marketing and activation and distribution)
Thursday, Nov. 28th


Field visit and workshop with some AgriBusiness Cluster and Business Support Services (topics: ABC building, internal governance, trust building, need for BSS, cost share with partners, financial inclusion)
Thursday, Nov. 28th


Travel back to Nairobi, with stop over at Mount Kenya for coffee and lunch
Friday, Nov. 29th


Closure plenary meeting and lessons learnt
Friday, Nov. 29th



Optional Game Drive: Nairobi National Park



InterContinental Hotel in Nairobi

A haven in the city, InterContinental Nairobi is ideally located for business, 16 kilometers from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.. The hotel boasts an award-winning Indian restaurant – Bhandini, a dine by the pool restaurant – Terrace, Plantation Coffee shop, Makuti Bar. Explore the rich history of the city and attractions close to the hotel, whether it is the Nairobi Gallery, handmade African artifacts at Maasai market, or the beautiful Nairobi National Park.

IFDC has arranged a special participant price of US $130 BB. Please make booking arrangements as soon as possible, as space is limited.



Field Visit Hotels

Two hotels will be made available for the overnight field visit: Meru Slopes Hotel and Alba Hotel. Booking information will be made available soon.

Enrollment and Fees

The program fee for the five-day workshop is US $1,700 per participant (inclusive of a US $250 nonrefundable deposit).

Participants have the opportunity to pay an early-bird rate of $1,500 if registration and payment are received by September 25, 2019. Registration and payment should reach IFDC no later than October 25, 2019, four weeks before the program is scheduled. Payments received thereafter will be accepted at IFDC’s discretion and incur a late fee. Please refer to the table below for pricing.

Group discounts are available for those organizations who sponsor multiple participants. Discounts are available according to the schedule below.


Refund Policy: The program fee, less the non-refundable deposit and, if applicable, the wire fee, will be refunded for cancellations made two (2) weeks before the commencement of the program. Ninety percent of the paid fee will be returned and 10 percent, in addition to the deposit, will be charged to cover administrative costs for cancellations made between two (2) weeks and one (1) week before the commencement of the program. Cancellations made less than one (1) week before the commencement of the program will receive no refund.

Registration will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Paid participants will receive priority. An organization wishing to enroll more than one participant should supply information and payment for each participant.

The program fee covers registration, training and reference material, coffee/tea breaks, all lunches and surface transportation on field trips. The fee does not include air travel, lodging and dinner expenses, or medical and communication expenses.

Payment Options

Payment of the program fee can be made by:

(1) check or draft payable to IFDC;

(2) wire transfer to IFDC’s account in the U.S.A. through First Metro Bank, 406 West Avalon Avenue, Muscle Shoals, Alabama, U.S.A., ABA number 062203955 for credit to IFDC account number 55281;

or (3) major credit card – MasterCard, Visa or American Express.

Register Now!

About IFDC

IFDC is a nonprofit, public international organization (PIO) dedicated to increasing agricultural productivity and food production through the development and use of plant nutrients in sustainable crop production systems. Headquartered in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, U.S.A., IFDC is involved in human resource development, research and technical assistance in collaboration with public, private, national and international organizations throughout the world. IFDC has conducted more than 700 formal workshops, study tours and training programs for over 11,000 participants from over 150 countries since 1974. The programs have covered a wide range of subjects including integrated soil fertility management and fertilizer use efficiency, fertilizer production technology, agro-input dealerships, competitive marketing, supply chain management, investment analysis, policy reforms and numerous specialized topics.


About 2SCALE

The program incubates and accelerates inclusive business through partnerships with companies and professional farmer organizations that want to build commercially viable strategies in African food industries. These companies and farmer organizations are seen as the drivers of inclusive business; they are called inclusive business champions. 2SCALE builds partnerships to realize the inclusive business ideas of the business champions, involving farmers, input dealers, and other relevant stakeholders. Through tailored support services for these partnerships 2SCALE contributes to improving access to nutritious food products at local consumer markets, preferably at the base of the pyramid. Learn more at

For all Training Program inquiries, contact:

Bridget Okumu
Training Coordinator

C/o ICIPE Campus, Duduville, Kasarani, Thika Road P.O Box 30772-00100 Nairobi Kenya
office: +254 (20) 514 3600 cell: +254 728 561 710 | skype: baokumu 

As a nonprofit organization, IFDC does not finance or sponsor any participant.