Agribusiness4Change Conference Video

Agribusiness4Change Conference Video

Finally, we are able to share the video from the Agribusiness 4 Change Conference from 7 – 9 May 2019 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with you. Check it out!

Agribusiness4Change Conference Video

Shaping rural transformation and inclusive agricultural growth - Agribusiness4Change Conference

Shaping rural transformation and inclusive agricultural growth - Agribusiness4Change Conference

group picture                          


168 development professionals and entrepreneurs came together at the international Agribusiness4Change conference from 7 to 9 May 2019 in Addis Ababa to discuss perspectives and challenges of future agribusiness to shape rural development, strengthen entrepreneurship and enhance inclusive agricultural transformation. Organized by the GIZ FBS Advisory Facility of the Sustainable Smallholder Agri-business Programme (SSAB) and in partnership with the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA), and the Green Innovation Center Ethiopia, participants from 20 different countries discussed topics relevant to agribusiness approaches while emphasizing on the scaling up of such approaches.


YOUTH IN AGRICULTURE was the leitmotif of the conference cutting across all sessions. Millions of youth entering the African labor market each year seek employment opportunities to generate income and build decent livelihoods. Among them graduates from institutions for Agricultural Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ATVET) who struggle to find employment or to set up their own business in agricultural value chains. The key takeaways from the conference are relevant to policies, employment creation and investments in agribusiness: access to land and finances is crucial for all and particularly young agripreneurs. Here, emphasis was laid on the private sector to invest more in rural areas. In addition to that, every ambitious agripreneur should make use of existing structures such as policies, institutions, and networks to harness the energy of political participation at various levels. Governments should appreciate and promote the idea of young agripreneurs and thus create an environment for  agricultural transformation.

YOUNG AGRIPRENEURS CREATE EMPLOYMENT. The Value Change panel found that the rural (community) context offers the most important potential for employment creation. A deeper dive was Vision Lab C on off-farm employment potentials and on the question of how to transfer this vision into reality. Small entrepreneurs in agriculture and processing contribute to value addition through their profits, wages paid to hired labour, purchase of inputs and use of services. In addition, professional organizations, contract farming, off-farm business services also play an important role in value chain development and the creation of formal employment.

BRIDGING THE GAP. Young graduates and young people living in rural areas are not well connected while the current focus of youth policies in agriculture being more on highly educated youth. However, the majority of youth living and working in African agriculture is less privileged so far. They need appropriate support for capacity development as agripreneurs or technical service providers. Formats that bring together young graduate agribusiness entrepreneurs with farmers and youth that had less chance for formal education open up opportunities to combine education, skills development, infrastructure and incentives to make agriculture attractive for youth.

Alongside the conference, approaches, experiences and impacts of topics discussed during the event were showcased at the INNOVATION MARKET carried out by 20 participating programmes, partners and organizations. Providing unique communication materials and channels, the market encouraged participants to dive deeper into ideas and exchange amongst each other. Finally, these ideas were further elaborated through four FIELD TRIPS. An opportunity to engage with the host country Ethiopia to learn more about its implementation of FBS trainings, collaboration with processing companies, service provisions and the involvement of rural youth and cooperatives.

Participants used a conference app specially designed to provide guidance on the agenda, attendees and speakers. Moreover, the app contained communication features allowing the participants to ask questions, vote, communicate via news feeds and evaluate the conference.           

The Agribiz4Change conference was a unique experience that acknowledged once again the significance of agribusiness approaches for building a sustainable agricultural model for the future. Agribusiness skills and mind-sets are the cornerstone for effective policies and investments leading to inclusive growth. Considering demographic and socio-economic challenges in Africa, large scale and speed are required to make significant impacts for inclusive agricultural transformation for and with young Africans.

Youth in Agriculture

  Innovation market

Field Trip

Farmer Business School has come to stay in Africa

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

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

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

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