The UCF is currently supporting a network of 336 fellow poor farmers, and we are just getting started. We have also thus far provided over 4,000 kg of ginger rhizomes to these farmers, in partnership with RandomActs.org. And in 2016, a well-wisher from Seattle donated to us a dump truck (photos below). The truck delivers organic wastes (fertilizers) to all the farmers we work with, and distributes seed at planting. The UCF then creates market links for our collective produce, so we can market it together.
Nonetheless, access to reliable markets remains the main challenge for rural poor smallholder farmers across our region. To create a lasting, sclabale solution to this, the UCF wants to devise a way of linking rural poor farmers with value chains, e.g. in the food/beverage industry. That is the reason we recently created this campaign.
With a new focus on integrating rural smallholder farmers into value chains, we aim to help farmers diversify their incomes, by creating markets not only for ginger (which has been our sole focus crop), but also for a range of crops that are produced in our region, such as cassava; cereals; mangoes; pineapples; banana; passion fruits; beets; moringa etc. This will help poor farmers diversify their incomes and escape poverty.