TechnoServe And Kellogg Launch New Program Phase: Climate Change Resilience With Focus On Women Farmers
Program helps tens of thousands of women farmers in India and South Africa improve incomes, while contributing to Kellogg sustainability commitments
Washington, D.C. (March 8, 2016) – On International Women’s Day, Kellogg Company and TechnoServe have announced the expansion of a training program in India and South Africa to improve incomes for thousands of smallholder maize and wheat farmers–particularly women–and enhance their skills in climate-smart agriculture.
Kellogg, the world’s leading cereal company, is working with the nonprofit TechnoServe to help achieve its Global 2020 Sustainability Goals, which include supporting 500,000 farmers (of whom 15,000 are smallholder farmers) through partnerships, research and training on climate-smart agriculture. This builds on Kellogg and TechnoServe’s 2014 partnership to map the role of smallholder farmers and women in Kellogg’s global supply chain.
The farmer training program with TechnoServe, located in important Kellogg sourcing markets, is a key part of this initiative. Launched in January 2015, the program has already trained nearly 3,500 smallholder farmers, of which almost 40% are women. The new phase will reach roughly 12,000 additional farmers in India through “Centers of Excellence” (last-mile input distribution enterprises), and 400 additional maize farmers in South Africa, with similar percentages of women.
The South Africa program will employ a variety of climate-smart agricultural approaches, building on the improved technology and specialized agronomic training that have helped farmers in the current phase employ more sustainable farming techniques. Farmers in this program are also trained in business management and financial literacy, a particularly important skill set for women, who can then assume greater ownership of income-generating activities. The program has helped shift many of these women from subsistence farming to producing crops for profit for the first time.
One of those farmers is Elsie Nosenga, a smallholder farmer in South Africa supporting 10 family members, who learned how to maximize her crop yields, maintain farm and financial records, and manage her farm like a business. “This program has given me hope,” she said. “Hope that things can change, that my community can make progress, and that my farm can provide enough income to feed my family and send my children to school.”
The program expansion comes at a particularly important time for South Africa, which is experiencing its worst drought in decades. Maize production in 2015 fell 30 percent from the previous year.
On a global level, climate-smart agriculture has emerged as a critical tool in safeguarding both food security and livelihoods of the world’s 2.5 billion smallholder farmers. Women, who constitute 43% of the agricultural labor force in developing countries, are particularly vulnerable to climate-induced economic shocks.
“Kellogg Company is helping improve the livelihoods of farming families and communities who grow our ingredients by focusing on smallholder farmers, many of whom are women, who contribute to the world’s food supply, but often lack access to important resources,” said Diane Holdorf, Kellogg Company Chief Sustainability Officer. “Kellogg recognizes that women play a significant role in agriculture, but in some countries still face challenges of injustice and inequality. With partners such as TechnoServe, we are identifying the parts of our supply chain with the highest prevalence of women and in partnership developing programs to help improve their livelihoods, families and communities.”
“Investing in women farmers is not only smart business for leading food companies like Kellogg. It’s also absolutely essential if we want to ensure the sustainability of smallholder farmers’ livelihoods and our global food systems,” said TechnoServe CEO William Warshauer. “Having worked with millions of women in developing countries, TechnoServe has experienced the transformative power of women who gain the skills and opportunities to improve their lives and communities. Programs like this with Kellogg are enabling women in some of the most vulnerable parts of the world to become champions of a more environmentally and economically sustainable future.”
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About Kellogg Company
At Kellogg Company (NYSE: K), we strive to make foods people love. This includes our beloved brands – Kellogg's®, Keebler®, Special K®, Pringles®, Kellogg's Frosted Flakes®, Pop-Tarts®, Kellogg's Corn Flakes®, Rice Krispies®, Cheez-It®, Eggo®, Mini-Wheats® and more – that nourish families so they can flourish and thrive. With 2015 sales of 13.5 billion and more than 1,600 foods, Kellogg is the world's leading cereal company; second largest producer of cookies, crackers and savory snacks; and a leading North American frozen foods company. Through our Breakfasts for Better DaysTM global hunger initiative, we've provided more than 1.4 billion servings of cereal and snacks to children and families in need around the world. To learn more, visit www.kelloggcompany.com or follow us on Twitter @KelloggCompany, YouTube and on Social K.
TechnoServe is a nonprofit organization that develops business solutions to poverty. We work with enterprising men and women in 29 developing countries to build competitive farms, businesses and industries. By linking people to information, capital and markets, we help them create lasting prosperity for their families and communities. With millions of people positively impacted by TechnoServe’s work since 1968, we believe in the power of private enterprise to transform lives.
TechnoServe: Rebecca Regan-Sachs, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202.650.5713
Kellogg: Media Hotline, email@example.com, 269-961-3799