ACP-EU Value Chains

ACP-EU Value Chains

About the project

Strengthening capacities and informing policies for developing value chains of neglected and underutilized crops in Africa (2014-2016)

There is international recognition that agricultural systems need to diversify and that neglected and underutilized species (NUS) play a role in providing food and nutritional security, income for smallholder farmers, and a tool for adapting agricultural systems to climate change. However, the expansion and commercialization of NUS are constrained by a low knowledge base, weak value chains and inadequate capacity and policies.

The project 'Strengthening capacities and informing policies for developing value chains of neglected and underutilized crops in Africa' aims to build capacities and to foster an enabling policy environment in Africa for the development of enhanced value chains for NUS that contribute to improved food and nutritional security, income, and mitigation of climatic, agronomic and economic risks.

The project, running from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2016, is supported by the ACP Science & Technology Programme, implemented by the ACP Secretariat and funded by the European Union, with co-financing from project partners and the CGIAR Research Programmes on Policies Institutions and Markets (PIM) and Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).

Focal countries and crops

The project is focused on three countries: Benin, Kenya and Zimbabwe and two crops: Bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranea) and amaranth (Amaranthus spp.). Both crops are recognized as priorities for development in Western, Eastern and Southern Africa but they are constrained by weak value chains.


The project aims to achieve four results:

  • National action plans for value chain upgrading of target crops
  • Strategies and tools for integrating neglected and underutilized species into higher education
  • Enhanced capacities among African scientists to design value chain research and communicate results
  • Strategies for strengthening research, education and policy for neglected and underutilized species
Logos of project partners