AGRO-CASHEW PROCESSING FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

AGRO-CASHEW PROCESSING FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT : Africa-Adding value to reverse the long-term decline in its competitiness

Banjul, GambiaGuinea-Bissau
Year Founded:
2015
Organization type: 
for profit
Project Stage:
Start-Up
Budget: 
$500,000 - $1 million
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

As of 2015, 10% of the cashews produced in Africa are processed and exported directly to Europe. Our mission is to promote sustainable economic development by boosting Africa's revenue through the processing of raw materials at the point of origin, add value & spearhead the regions' economic growth.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

How can the continent with the largest amount of raw material still live in abject poverty, what if agri-business and raw material processing could contribute to the path of sustainable economic growth and development in Africa?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Raw material get exported for processing to Asia,despite the huge deposits of raw materials in Africa. Problems of poverty,low productivity, inadequate infrastructure and poorly integrated markets faced are often exacerbated by an under-developed agro-industrial sector.Attention is usually paid to the value chain via which products reach the final buyer.This neglect results in enormous potential losses of value added and employment opportunities

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

To build a factory with a processing capacity of 6000 M/tons, starting with 2000-3000 M/Tons for the first year. Value will be added to the cashews and exported directly to western markets and export to Asian will reduced. The added value will bring sustainability and efficiency to an underdeveloped value chain, through processing nuts in Africa. Over 300 people will be employed and many more will benefit indirectly as well. This will create a ready market for over 10,000 farmers to sell their produce.They have the incentive to increase the quantity and quality of its supply and a win-win relationships with the farmers will be established. Farmers will be trained on best-practice cultivation, post-harvest & provided with financial support

Awards

None yet this is a startup
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Mo a single mother of five (5) kids struggles on a daily basis to feed her children and offer them a decent living. She believes the project will provide her with a place where she can sell her products wants and process her nuts locally. Here she can sell her products without being exploited. And also look for a job after the cashew season has past so that she can gain additional income for her and her family. With this factory Mo's life and that of her family's will benefit from the added value to the nuts and become more self reliant and less dependent on the buyers from Asia that set the selling price.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

The cashew nut has the potential to be a economic dynamite in Africa, as it has in Asia and other parts of Africa such as Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire. Cashew processing has had a significant impact on economic development of these countries and many m. The factory will create about 300 direct jobs, tax revenues for the government, and opportunities for small farmers. Hence added value activities in cashew processing will have a big and direct impact on poverty reduction, fairer prices for farmers selling to local processors. There will be an increase in competitiveness; Reduced unemployment; Improved rural food security; Improved income for farmers. It will also impact the lives of about 10,000 farmers. In particular, the incomes of both the rural and the urban poor must be raised. Food security and employment opportunities are essential features of the spread of the benefits to the poor.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Although new in this market, we believe we bring with us a passion for the development of Africa, a passion to see the alleviation of poverty, to see economic growth and to cut down on the exploitation of our smallholder farmers. We hope to work with others in the supply chain such as fair trade, kraft foods. We do hope we can colloborate and work with companies such as Olam in the Netherlands. This is a market that has been largely exploited with no considerations given to the communities, we will reach a people who were exploited, if the farmers succeed we succeed,
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Due it seasonality we will have to stock an inventory of cashew that will last us till the next harvest. We will be buying from Gambia and Cassamance in Senegal . Strong internal controls and good financial management reporting systems. Taking stakeholders their due consideration, for instance to maintain quality certain standards on products quality will be set. A Total cost approach and Total system's approach of marketing logistics.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

There are very few processing factories and the three that were identified had very little capacity. or has poor processing techniques; Cashews nuts must be shelled, processed, and vacuum packed for roasting/flavoring in end markets but at the moment many in the market find it difficult to meet demand, quality or deliver on time Of the few processors that currently exist, many still can have difficulty meeting international standards. It' s worth noting that the majority of poccesing firs here are very small. The majority of nuts are still exported whole, to be processed in end markets.
Team

Founding Story

How can the continent with the largest deposits of raw material we use the most still poor. Asia economies have accelerated their industrialisation on the basis of manufactured exports. So why are we not doing the same, adding value and gaining revenue. I was not happy with the status quo and felt something must be done to change the trend. Africa still relies on aid, still has poor sanitation, poor access to clean water, high poverty rates and is still highly underdeveloped. I believe in the saying "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day;teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime". Africa needs Agri-business for development not more aid!

Team

Caroline Mendy Founder and Marketing officer Dawda Kaira Finance and Admin Manager Board members: Non-Executive member: Muhammed M. Jagana Momodou L. Jarju Board member Joshua Mendy Board member
Background
Please confirm how you heard about the Unilever Awards:

I was looking for funding oppportunities and couldn't believe my eyes when I stumbled across it through goggle

Please confirm your role in the initiative (eg Founder/co-Founder) and your organisational title:

Founder: CEO

Which of the 8 UN Global Goals (Sustainable Development Goals) pre-selected for this competition does your solution relate most closely to? [select all that apply]

No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Gender Equality, Clean Water and Sanitation, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Responsible Consumption and Production, Climate Action.

Leadership and the Unilever Awards
Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.

Although this can be said to be our first venture. We have had experiences in running various startups both in Gambia and Senegal. In Gambia I and my colleagues have gain valuable skills from Pristine Consulting and VoLo Africa startups in Software development offering solutions to the African markets; these are transferable that could be utilized in running the cashew processing factory.
Caroline Mendy: In my past role I was the Client services Manager- in charge of the customer services department and the Marketing department;I have a MSc. International Business Management
Dawda Kaira- He is the Finance and Admin Manager and is an ACCA fellow

Beyond your existing team, who else are you working with to achieve your objectives, eg partners, advisors, mentors?

Muhamed M. Jagana is the president of the Gambia Chamber Commerce and Industry (GCCI) The Gambia, he is member of the board at Pristine Consulting, he is the CEO at VoLo Africa, a board member at Ecobank Gambia and the founder of JFin. He has been a mentor to us.