The Trade Hub is providing support for the integration of gender specific interventions into the HM Boerdery Strategic Partnership Grant, which focuses on groundnut value chain development in Malawi. It is estimated that 7,000 smallholder groundnut producers in Malawi (60% of whom are women) will benefit from the grant, which is creating farmer trainers to disseminate knowledge on aflatoxin control. As part of the grant, the groundnut sorting and grading facilities of the National Smallholder Farmers’ Association of Malawi (NASFAM) will be upgraded, enabling small-scale groundnut farmers to achieve higher prices for their product.
The first phase of gender support within the grant is a gender analysis that will used to inform gender training for NASFAM and smallholder farmers. As part of the analysis, the Trade Hub met with both the commercial and development divisions within NASFAM to identify gender gaps within the organization’s development and business activities. The team also had an opportunity to visit NASFAM’s groundnut processing plant where the equipment supplied through the grant will be installed.
Meetings have already been held with some of NASFAM’s partners, including Feed the Future, Integrating Nutrition into Value Chains (INVC), the gender officers in the Food and Agriculture Organisation, and the United Nations Fund for Gender Equality to gather information and perceptions regarding NASFAM’s role in promoting smallholder farmers and the economic empowerment of women. The Trade Hub established that these organizations are offering NASFAM valuable opportunities for gender specific capacity development.
The Trade Hub is also scheduled to attend a Marketing Fair being organized by the INVC Program within NASFAM. The fair will provide an opportunity for the team to meet with other stakeholders such as agro dealers, buyers, and extension agents.