Nigeria’s vibrant, diversified economy is the third largest on the continent and the largest in West Africa. Its growing manufacturing sector produces a wide array of goods for the region.

The country’s largely subsistence agricultural sector has not kept up with rapid population growth, however, and production of export crops like cocoa has stagnated. The Agriculture Transformation Agenda (ATA), unveiled in 2012, makes farming a top government priority, and outlines strategies for fostering sustainable agriculture and agribusiness in Nigeria.

In alignment with ATA’s objectives, TechnoServe is developing a number of programs to address constraints in Nigerian agriculture, such as a program connecting cocoa farmers with access to input credit. TechnoServe has also helped stakeholders in key industries, from cassava to poultry, develop strategies to get industry growth back on track.

On The Ground



Helping Nigeria’s Cashew Farmers Reach Their Potential

Through a $1 million grant from the Walmart Foundation, TechnoServe is helping raise the incomes of 6,000 Nigerian cashew farmers through training on good agronomic practices, farming as a business, and improved methods for harvest and post-harvest handling. Farmers also learn how to consolidate their stocks and engage in other business practices to enable them to sell directly to processors and maximize their incomes. The program aims to boost participating farmers’ yields by up to 20 percent by 2015. One of the program’s greatest successes has been the unprecedented level of women's participation. Though female cashew farmers make up less than 15 percent of Nigeria’s cashew farming population, 47 percent of farmers currently enrolled in TechnoServe’s training program are women.



Securing Credit for Cocoa Farmers

Though fertilizers have the potential to double cocoa yields on smallholder plots, most Nigerian farmers don’t have access to the credit they need to purchase these inputs. As a result, Nigerian cocoa producers are achieving only 30 percent of their potential yields. In 2012, the World Cocoa Foundation launched the African Cocoa Initiative to increase productivity and food security on diversified cocoa farms across West Africa. Building on its success supporting the cocoa sector in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, TechnoServe will play a key role in a pilot project linking an expected 500 smallholder Nigerian cocoa farmers to input credit by 2015.



Analyzing Markets for New Opportunities

TechnoServe has conducted market assessments and strategic plans for stakeholders in a number of Nigerian industries, including edible oils and cassava. For example, Unilever engaged TechnoServe to analyze the business case for Allanblackia, a tree whose seeds can be used to produce vegetable oil. TechnoServe identified areas of opportunity for Allanblackia, and developed a model for a five-year program to help kick-start its commercialization. Nigeria is the world’s largest cassava producer, and yet for various reasons, it is one of the least profitable. Nigeria’s ministry of agriculture enlisted TechnoServe to assess possible models for cassava marketing organizations and develop an implementation plan for the model recommended by the organization.



Raising Rural Incomes

TechnoServe is an implementing partner in PrOpCom Mai-Karfi, a new six-year program working to increase the incomes of 500,000 northern Nigerians by 50 percent. Since the program kicked off in 2012, TechnoServe has led the evaluation of existing and potential PrOpCom markets, identifying soy and grain storage as promising opportunities for new interventions. TechnoServe consultants helped two leading fertilizer companies develop smaller product sizes and creative distribution and pricing strategies to reach smallholder farmers. TechnoServe is also taking the lead on implementing the Tractor Support Program, engaging financial institutions to provide loans to purchase tractors, strengthening the Tractor Owners and Operators Association of Nigeria and working with tractor manufacturers and suppliers to meet farmers’ needs for equipment and maintenance.



Blog Posts

April 20, 2016

How Access to Long-Established Technology Can Help Feed Growing Cities

The Propcom Mai-Karfi program in Nigeria is helping to increase access to tractors, which will aid farmers in increasing their yields.

Read More

More Posts


TechnoServe Nigeria

6/Plot 1413 Ogbagi Street, 2nd Floor
Off Oro-Ago Crescent, Off Mohammadu Buhari Way, Cadastral Zone II
Garki, Abuja, Nigeria
Tel: +234 9 291 0631

Larry Umunna

Country Director