Bambara groundnut and amaranth are commonly cultivated in sub-Saharan Africa for home consumption or local markets. Some entrepreneurs are starting to develop and market new products based on these crops and some research projects are in progress, but these efforts are still in the early stages.
We need to better understand these value chains, identify current constraints and assess opportunities for upgrading them. Stimulating consumers’ demand is critical. Stakeholders also need to agree on priority actions, including research, to focus efforts where they are most needed.
Three national workshops, held in June and July 2014 in Zimbabwe, Kenya and Benin, analysed the value chains of Bambara groundnut and amaranth in the respective country. Each event involved 20-30 stakeholders working in research, production and marketing, including private sector actors.
The workshops mapped out current value chains and assessed bottlenecks and constraints at the different stages. They also identified opportunities for upgrading the value chains and set priorities for action. Finally, they identified stakeholders working on the two staple crops, as a foundation for future collaboration.
Reports from the workshops:
National Action Plans for upgrading value chains of Bambara groundnut and amaranth in Benin, Kenya and Zimbabwe, respectively, have been prepared by the national partners, in consultation with stakeholders.
Currently, the project partners are promoting these National Action Plans at agricultural fair, conferences and other events, to reach out to the target groups and beneficiaries of the project.