Farmer Business School has come to stay in Africa 2018-09-19

Farmer Business School has come to stay in Africa

Pan-African Master Training Programme on Farmer Business School (FBS) launched in Togo and Malawi

Over 1,000,000 smallholders in Africa have learned how to better manage and increase their incomes through FBS training. The demand for the successful approach continues and Africa urgently needs new FBS Master Trainers.

The FBS Advisory Facility exists since 2017 as a component of the regional programme Sustainable Smallholder Agri-Business (SSAB). Due to the high demand for the approach, the FBS Advisory Facility conducted round 1 of the Pan-African Master Trainer Programme in Togo and Malawi this summer. 48 out of 350 applicants from 18 francophone and anglophone African countries qualified for the programme in a multi-stage process.

The future master trainers will support interested programmes, organizations and companies in the introduction and implementation of FBS. This includes the adaptation of FBS training materials and the training and coaching of FBS trainers. Thus, they play a central role in the sustainability and quality assurance of the internationally successful Farmer Business School.

International FBS Master Trainers, who pioneered the development of FBS (2010), conducted the Master Trainings in Togo and Malawi. Business administration, investment decisions, producer organizations, financial services, "engender-ing agribusiness", institutionalization, conflict management: these are only some of the contents of the 12 training days.

The goal is a pan-African methodological standard that meets the requirements of a country or a value chain and is suitable for economic scaling-up and aggregated reporting - as already implemented. In exchange with farmers and local partners during field visits, the participants gained insights into FBS practice in a different context than their own.

The visit of Dr. Schmitz from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) was a highlight of the training in Malawi. Through a short training simulation, he became familiar with the FBS approach. The participating experts described the effects of FBS in their countries of origin and did their best to show Dr. Schmitz the relevance of the approach.

The future FBS Master trainers return to their countries with extensive knowledge and a vision for the future. The FBS-Facility is now planning the personalized round 2 of the certification process. By the end of 2018, the candidates will train new trainers in their home countries under supervision and update or adapt training content as required. In the 3rd round, the successful participants will be certified as FBS Master Trainers.   

... Farmer Business School has come to stay in Africa.

 group picture MTP Togo Master Training in Togo

group picture MTP Malawi Master Training in Malawi

First National Conference of FBS in Nigeria 2018-04-23

First National Conference of FBS in Nigeria

The first National Conference of the Farmer Business School (FBS) was held in Abuja, Nigeria. The conference was characterized by a varied program consisting of panel discussions, testimonies from farmers trained in FBS and a short video of the achievements of FBS in Nigeria.

So far, 250,000 farmers (33% women) have been trained in Nigeria. Thanks to the support of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Nigeria, the FBS approach is now widespread in 19 out of Nigeria’s 36 states.

A director of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Ime Umoh, observed that FBS had become a veritable approach for farmers in Nigeria to learn good agricultural practice and acquire business skills to make agriculture a business.

Mr. Quadri Olalekan, director of Plantation Development in the Ministry of Agriculture, explained that FBS had helped farmers transit from peasant farming to agribusiness which is also in line with the Federal Government’ s Agriculture Promotion Policy of Nigeria.

Noting that FBS will be closed at the end of this year, there are plans to institutionalize the approach through extension service agencies in Nigeria.

However, the FBS Advisory Facility team will remain accessible.

 National Conference FBS Nigeria

National FBS Conference Nigeria


SSAB Regional Partner Meeting 2018-02-19

SSAB Regional Partner Meeting

The regional Partner Meeting of the Sustainable Smallholder Agri-Business Programme (SSAB) took place from February 6 to 8 in Accra.
70 representatives from SSAB partners, cocoa producer organisations, banks and donors engaged during that meeting in how to sustainably carry on the successful SSAB extension and service approaches for farmers and their organisations.
Result of the meeting is an action plan for the adoption of approaches such as Farmer Business School (FBS), Cooperative Business School and training on Good Agricultural Practices for cocoa and food production by SSAB partners. The partner institutions have developed roadmaps for the mobilisation of partner financing and the institutional anchoring of these approaches.
FBS goes digital: Tech startup companies have presented in a competition during the Partner Meeting their ideas for a digital FBS application. The FBS-App will provide with simple economical management and planning tools support to farmers for the time after the FBS training. This contributes to close the digital divide for African smallholder farmers.

 Regional Partner Meeting 2018

Winner of Hackathon






The winner of the FBS-App competition:  AGRO INNOVA


Fostering the sustainability of FBS 2018-02-16

Fostering the sustainability of FBS

Nigeria: Award to GIZ-SSAB on "Most Creative Training model for Farmers"

GIZ-SSAB was invited to the 2017 Cocoa Festival Conference and Awards in Eti-Oni, Osun state, in December. The event was a week-long ceremony with special guests. A highlight of the Conference programme was a simulation of the Farmer Business School (FBS).

At this occasion, GIZ was given the first award for the "Most Creative Training Model".

The venue of the Conference, Eti-Oni Kingdom, is home of Nigeria's oldest cocoa plantation founded in 1896.


 Cocoa FestivalAward 1st Nigerian Cocoa Award

Press Article on the SSAB perpetuation worskhop of FBS 2017-12-15

Press Article on the SSAB perpetuation worskhop of FBS

On 12th december 2017 SSAB and its Ivorian partners held a workshop on the perpetuation of the FBS approach. Read more in the article in Fraternité Matin (only avalable in French).

1st African Conference on Farmer Business School 2017-12-05

1st African Conference on Farmer Business School

Eight years after the first introduction of the Farmer Business School (FBS) approach, the first African conference took place from 10 to 12 October 2017 in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Read our conference summary...

44 FBS Curricula at a glance 2017-11-20

44 FBS Curricula at a glance

A wide range of FBS training materials was developped in the frame of severals developpment projects. It is available to potentials implementers. See the overview...

FBS Handbook 2017-11-20

FBS Handbook

SSAB is about to finalize the work on the FBS Handbook. It explains concept and approach of FBS, describes how FBS can be implemented, how resources can be mobilized and how the approch von be monitored. Read more in the abstract and tables of content of the document which is about to be released...

SSAB GAP training material overview 2017-11-15

SSAB GAP training material overview

Since project start,  SSAB has intensively worked on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) training material development. Training materials on GAP are avalable in French and English for several crops for the intervention countries Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, and Togo. See the GAP training material overview...

SSAB produced training videos on GAP and nutrition 2017-10-06

SSAB produced training videos on GAP and nutrition

Digital extension material in the form of 3D animations support the face-to-face extension services of partners and adapt them to the fast-growing digital environment in Africa.
SSAB used well-proven and research-based analog training material to develop two 3D animated training videos: one on GAP for maize and one on good practices for a healthy diet.

Read more and watch the videos under: SSAB training videos

Article published "Knowledge powers development" 2017-09-28

Article published "Knowledge powers development"

Having access to information and knowledge is a key driver for improving farming practices. But limited numbers of public extension workers in sub-Saharan Africa mean that farmers often have only poor access to extension services, or none at all.

SSAB combines face-to-face extension with information & communications technology (ICT) solutions. Mobile device based ICT solutions play an important role, considering ever cheaper smartphones and the advancements of ICT in sub-Saharan Africa.

Read more in our Article on ICT: "Knowledge powers development", now available for download...