The “Scaling Climate- and Nutrition- Smart Crops Through Market Systems in North Nigeria” project will enhance the climate, nutrition, and economic resilience of smallholder farming households and consumers. By strengthening climate-smart markets for vitamin A maize, iron pearl millet, and iron and zinc cowpea to work more effectively for poor farmers, women, and small-scale entrepreneurs, the project will create rural jobs, uplift incomes, enhance climate resilience, and improve access to healthy diets.
The two-year initiative (August 2022 – July 2024) is being led by HarvestPlus and implemented in the Nigerian states of Kano, Kaduna, Jigawa, Adamawa, and Gombe. The project is funded with UK aid from the UK government through its Propcom+ program, which aims to support climate-resilient and sustainable agriculture. HarvestPlus puts Nigerian smallholder farmers at the center of the African agriculture agenda, while generating employment for women and youth in rural and urban communities.
Climate volatility in northern Nigeria is leading to decreased crop yields, and increased food prices, food insecurity, and malnutrition. Rising CO2 levels also decrease nutrient content in staple crops, potentially exacerbating health burdens from hidden hunger.
Climate-smart crop production technologies and practices—such as nutritious and drought tolerant biofortified varieties, natural resource management techniques, and financing—are critical as a means of adaptation to boost crop production for improved food security and economic returns.
To strengthen markets to work more effectively for poor farmers and small-scale entrepreneurs, the project will support the promotion and scale-up of inclusive climate and nutrition focused business models, technologies, and practices. This will help agri-enterprises and smallholder farmers overcome critical market constraints that enhance the production, yields, quality and value of affordable, safe, and nutritious produce.
The project will help agri-enterprises and smallholder farming households to improve and expand:
- Seed companies’ capacity to rapidly multiply basic and certified biofortified seed
- Farmer adoption and intensified application of climate- and nutri-smart inputs
- Access to climate insurance and finance for farmers to invest in and adopt new technologies
- e-extension and physical outreach for tailored and timely messages to farmers
- Technical capacity of aggregators for cost-effective offtake
- Contract farming schemes to integrate larger numbers of farmers in procurement models
- Women farmer’s, including internally displaced persons, engagement in seed and food markets
The project will result in:
- 650,000 farming households producing nutritious, climate-smart biofortified crops
- 520,000 households and 200 small- and medium-sized enterprises with increased resilience to climate change
- 432,500 hectares of additional farmland under climate and nutrition smart agriculture technologies
- 391,000 people with improved incomes from biofortified markets