The Market Development in the Niger Delta (MADE II) programme funded by UK aid has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Okomu Oil Palm Company Plc.
This engagement aims to improve collaboration between Okomu and its partners for the engagement of smallholder farmers in an inclusive business model that will improve access to market. The initiative will help Okomu to build a commercial relationship with existing Tenera Oil Palm smallholder farmers around the plantation which was not existing before now. This relationship will help the company to offtake additional tons of fresh fruit bunches that result in increased revenue while supporting the smallholder farmers to improve their productivity and production.
According to the MoU, Okomu will support partnering smallholder farmers with Tenera oil palm seedlings; facilitate the supply of good quality crop protection products, fertilizers, etc. at cost based on total local demand per time by farmers group, provide extension services including Best Management Practice through a third-party arrangement, get RSPO certification and a guaranteed market access for their FFB.
The Managing Director Okomu, Dr. Graham Hefer, said that “the effort will strengthen the profitability of smallholders selling FFB over local processing, and expand the pool of farmers planting Tenera Oil Palm in Edo State.”
The UK aid funded MADE, on the other hand, is supporting the mapping and baseline assessment of clusters of the farmers around Okomu covering geolocation, current farm size, yield, distance from Okomu etc. MADE will also support the coordination of existing and new farmers and their linkage to Okomu and extend their access to seedling intervention. MADE, through another partner will support farmers in best plantation management practices and assist with the development of a workable aggregation and logistic model that helps smallholder farmers get FFB to Okomu within 24hrs after harvest.
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