The global fruit and vegetable market is estimated to be worth more than €2.5 billion and is expected to continue to grow as consumer demand for products that are healthy, convenient and affordable will grow. At the same time, two billion people still suffer from micro-nutrient deficiencies, or hidden hunger, and would benefit from an increased vegetable and fruit intake, providing opportunities to smallholder farmers. Market access and commercial growth however are constrained due to consumer dietary habits, problems with food safety as well as food losses. Farmers also suffer from a lack of business connections and financing, climate change impacts, restrictive regulatory environments, and insufficient access to information also constrain horticulture growth in many developing countries.

The horticulture sector is the fastest growing SNV portfolio. We currently manage 15 horticulture projects, with a total value of €65 million plus, involving nearly 800,000 producers. We currently have horticulture projects in Kenya, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Ghana, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Mali, Zambia, Uganda, Laos, Zimbabwe, and agricultural expertise in another 25 countries.

Our Approach

SNV offers a value chain-based approach to address different problems and bottlenecks in the horticulture sector that are inherent in food value chains involving smallholders, SMEs, processing companies, retailers as well as consumers. SNV uses market based approaches to bring together stakeholders and build capacities of value chain actors to increase the efficiency in horticulture supply chains, improve food safety and reduce of food losses, while also increasing business opportunities.

We draw on best practices in agriculture production, supply chain management, market-based solutions, and strengthening of public institutions and service providers. Our projects also improve consumers’ nutritional behaviour. We address gender imbalances to realise sustainable nutrition for all and ensure the equal sharing of benefits from improved horticulture production and marketing.

SNV's horticulture value chain approach has the following components:

  • Market system development: analysing challenges and identifying opportunities to build sustainable smallholder supply chains, e.g. by improving farm productivity and profitability, organising producer groups, strengthening demand driven agri-input models and value chain service providers.
  • Evergreen Farms: Improving value chain efficiencies and reducing carbon footprint by promoting innovative green technologies, leading to the reduction of post-harvest losses, the use of less chemicals, less water and more renewable energy
  • Public Private Partnerships: SNV supports the forming of PPPs (made up of public bodies, companies, producers, NGOs and research institutions) to ensure involvement of all interests in tackling development issues, and to develop innovative and sustainable solutions to complex problems.
  • Smart Extension: through innovative extension services, SNV achieves effective uptake of sustainable and climate-smart production methods.
  • Value chain financing: Access to finance is crucial to create sustainable growth for both producers and companies and leverage improved production and value chains for both domestic and export markets.

In addition our projects addres gender imbalances, youth employment issues and nutrition aspects through our dedicated products, Balancing Benefits, Opportunities for Youth Employment and Sustainable Nutrition for All respectively.

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