By Aduragbemi Omiyale
A platform for farmers in Nigeria to access quality and cheap farming tools and inputs like seeds, fertilizer, crop protection products, grains, and water pumps has been created by a fast-growing technology-driven agricultural company, ThriveAgric.
The initiative, ThriveAgric Marketplace, established under its new strategy of Farmer Obsession, will increase local food production, boost aggregation of farm produce in high demand, and enable access to premium markets through trade and supply domestic and global off-takers.
This year alone, the ThriveAgric Marketplace, with more than 500 warehouses spread across 20 states in Nigeria, has aggregated and supplied over 100,000 metric tonnes of soybeans, paddy rice, maize, sorghum, millet, and wheat, to the Nigeria Commodity Exchange (NCX), Flour Mills of Nigeria, Gerawa Rice Mills Ltd, Amo Byng Nig. Ltd, Leboil Ltd, Salco Ltd, ASM Nig. Ltd, Falke Oil, and more. The company has also collaborated with the Flour Milling Association of Nigeria (FMAN) to drive import substitutions by funding 10,000 wheat farmers in the 2021 dry season.
Commenting on the initiative and new strategy, Chief Executive Officer, ThriveAgric, Mr Uka Eje, expressed the company’s desire to transform African agricultural infrastructures.
He said: “In recent times, experts argue that agricultural production in Sub-Saharan Africa remains lower than the rest of the world due to limiting regulations, climate, soil quality, disease, and reliance on subsistence farming. Yet, in time past, our continent boasted of thriving agricultural systems which enabled food production and security.”
“At ThriveAgric, we aim to overthrow this current trend and rebuild Africa’s agricultural systems through our new strategy and attendant initiatives which will encourage scale by positioning our smallholder farmers to derive more value for their efforts. In the long term, this will contribute to the sustainable growth of Africa’s agricultural sector and support food security, manufacturing, and trade,” he added.
In barely four years of operations, ThriveAgric has used its proprietary technology, an Agricultural Operating System (AOS), to empower over 350,000 smallholder farmers in Nigeria to increase their yield and income by selling their products to FMCGs and food processors.
The company has provided farmers with over 150,000 tonnes of fertilizers and seeds in loans, produced & traded up to 800,000MT of grains, impacted 2,600+ communities, created 9000+ jobs, and has over 500 warehouses across Nigeria.
The company’s VP, Commercial, Adetoro Akindele, said, “ThriveAgric has identified a huge gap in our agriculture sector and has begun to provide necessary & expedient solutions for Nigerians and Africa as a whole, particularly with skyrocketing food prices.
“Towards implementing these solutions, we will continue to seek avenues to achieve our organisational objectives and grow through vertical and horizontal integration.
“Our vision is to build an Africa that feeds itself and the world, and it is well within reach with the right support and financial backing. The agriculture industry has so much to offer.”