Azure Farms Enterprise is directly engaged in farming, as well as supporting smallholder farmers to produce maize, sorghum, rice, soybean, sesame, cowpea, groundnuts and vegetables. The company works with 300 smallholder farmers, of whom 65% are women, with each smallholder cultivating an average of 1.45 acres in Garu and Tempane districts. Azure Farms Enterprise was awarded Overall Best Farmer in 2018 in Denugo, and one of the out-growers was awarded Best Female Farmer in 2019 in Garu District. The company provides the smallholder farmers with credit facilities and education in good agricultural practices. The enterprise joined the MADE programme in 2014 and has since aggregated 5,000 MT of produce.
- Recruited, trained and deployed two Business Development Advisors (BDAs) and one BDA manager, responsible for farmer management practices and field demonstration activities.
- Supported underserved farmers using extension services from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture by supervising planting to harvest.
- Invested in farm demonstrations to showcase new products and practices.
- Facilitated relationships with other MADE partners, such as Tikola Limited, for complementary inputs and services.
- Strengthened commercial partnerships with other enterprises (East West International, ACDEP and USAID/ADVANCE) to increase yields and market access.
- Increased smallholder outreach from 35 to 300 between 2012 and 2019.
- Increased access to inputs, credit and markets.
- Increased understanding of good agricultural practices and the proper application of agro-inputs.
- Facilitated timely application of inputs.
- Improved financial forecasting and planning for smallholders.
- Increased yields for maize from 4 to 9 bags (100 kg) and for rice from 2 to 7 bags (100 kg) per acre.
- Improved health and the ease of paying school fees.