ABALIMI PHAMBILI FARMER SUPPORT PROGRAMMME

Lima was originally founded in response to the needs of South Africa’s disadvantaged agriculturalists. Small-scale farmers in South Africa’s rural areas are isolated from key markets and services considered essential for developing successful agricultural enterprises.

In order to meaningfully integrate smallholders into the agri-business industry, farmers must first be able to forge linkages to quality input suppliers and sales markets, as well as have access to credit, technical support and mechanisation.

Description
Since 2002, Lima has implemented the APP, a comprehensive farmer support programme targeting rural smallholders across four provinces and 16 field sites. The programme deploys teams of technically-qualified agricultural facilitators, extension assistants and master farmers; these locally-based teams service an average of 800 farmers per district through hands-on provision of technical training and facilitated access to markets. Field staff are supported by regional agricultural managers, whose knowledge is augmented by a complement of in-house specialists, including horticulturists, agricultural economists, engineers, and skilled community development practitioners.

Within the APP, technically-supported farming activities include: dryland cropping, irrigated cropping, small livestock production, poultry (broilers and table eggs) production, piggeries, and deciduous fruit production. A programmtic focus on market linkages has created durable relationships with suppliers of high-value, high-tech inputs, such as hybrid vegetable seedlings, day-old chicks and certified potato seed. Donor funds are also used to provide farmers with access to finance, typically in the form of micro-loans. With a modest line of interest-free credit linked to their production cycle, farmers receive inputs and invest in on-farm infrastructure, both of which enable them to expand production and improve incomes.

Impact
At the end of the last programme cycle in late 2015, over 10 200 permanent agricultural jobs and 2 377 seasonal agricultural jobs were created through the APP, and more than 9 700 farmers received free training during the last funding period. As a whole, these farmers produce a turnover of more than R120 million annually from their farming livelihoods.

Funders
Over the course of its 10+ year history, the Abalimi Phambili Programme (APP) has been implemented in partnership with Teba Development and through funding from the Chamber of Mines, Goldfields, Anglo American Chairman’s Fund, Anglo Platinum, Northam Platinum, DBSA Jobs Fund, Massmart, South Coast Development Agency and WesBank.

Geographic Area
KwaZulu-Natal: Nongoma, Jozini, Msinga
Eastern Cape: Umzimkulu, Bizana, Lusikisiki, Matatiele, Umzimvubu, Ixopo
Mpumalanga: Bushbuckridge
Limpopo: Maruleng/Sekororo, Ofcalaco

Acknowledgements