Our past and ongoing programs cut across many value chains in the agricultural landscape. These programs are focused on improving smallholder farmers’ livelihood and enhancing food security and nutrition. Below is a list of some of our past and current initiatives.

Funding Partner: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Key project objectives:

  • Advocate for an enabling environment for local sourcing through engagements with the government and relevant private sector stakeholders.
  • Increase demand for locally sourced milk through partnerships with dairy processors currently or interested in sourcing locally.
  • Improve smallholder dairy farmers’ productivity by increasing their access to technical support services and right inputs.
  • Empower women dairy farmers and enable them to improve their livelihoods and that of their households.
  • Improve nutrition outcomes among smallholder dairy households through food systems entry points.

Program coverage: Adamawa, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano and  Plateau States

Project duration: 5 years (2020 – 2024)

Consortium members: Sahel Consulting, TechnoServe and Livestock247

Role of Sahel:

Sahel is a lead implementer of the program and is partnering with dairy processors, implementing organisations, Federal government and relevant State governments to deliver various components of the program interventions including; farmers’ organisation, infrastructure development, productivity improvement, financial inclusion and income diversification support, training and extension, advocacy and behaviour change and policy advocacy to support a thriving dairy sector in Nigeria.

Anticipated Impact:

ALDDN aims to catalyze a vibrant local dairy sector in an inclusive way that benefits 210,000 individuals inclusive of 60,000 smallholder dairy farmers, especially women. ALDDN would achieve this by improving their livelihoods, productivity, nutrition and empowering the communities in which they live.

Funding Partner: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands

Key project objectives:

Improve farmers’ access and use of quality seed of new, improved varieties to sustainably
increase agricultural productivity.

Project duration: 4 years (2021 – 2024)

Consortium members: Sahel Consulting Agriculture and Nutrition Limited (SCANL), Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation (WCDI), National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), Plantum, and Naktuinbouw

Role of Sahel:

Sahel Consulting in collaboration with Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation (WCDI) and National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC) is responsible for overall programme coordination and implementation. Other strategic implementing partners are Plantum, Naktuinbouw, Seed Entrepreneurs Association of Nigeria (SEEDAN), National Centre for Genetic Resources and Biotechnology (NACGRAB), Institute of Agriculture (IAR).

Anticipated Impact:

  • Enhanced capacity for quality service provision.
  • Enhanced efficiency and transparency of seed markets.
  • Enhanced sector coordination and accountability.
  • Enhanced seed regulatory systems.

Funding Partner: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Key project objectives:

  • Support to embedded technical staff.
  • Funding and organizing targeted local, regional, and international training programs to build specific technical skills of the FMARD team and ensure effective knowledge transfer across the Ministry

Program coverage: Ibadan, Abuja

Project duration: 3 years (2020 – 2023)

Consortium members: Sahel Consulting,  Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD)

Role of Sahel:

Sahel Consulting is providing critical technical assistance to strengthen the capacity of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD). This is to ensure the implementation of the Nigerian Government’s Agricultural Development Strategy, which is aimed at transforming the agricultural sector to increase productivity and income of poor farmers, create job opportunities for the unemployed, and improved livelihoods for millions of smallholder farmers, particularly women and youth.

Anticipated Impact:


Funding Partner: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Key project objectives: Building on the solid foundations created by the BASICS-I and BEST projects in Nigeria and Tanzania respectively, BASICS-II aims to transform the cassava seed sector by promoting the dissemination of improved varieties thereby creating a community of seed entrepreneurs across the cassava value chain. The project focuses on Nigeria and Tanzania and will replicate the cassava seed system model in other African countries.

Project coverage: Oyo, Ogun, and Kwara states, Nigeria

Project duration: 5 years (2020 – 2025)

Consortium members:  IITA, Sahel Consulting, NRCRI, Catholic Relief Services (CRS), National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), IITA GoSeed, Umudike Seeds, MEDA, TARI, TOSCI.

Role of Sahel:Sahel Consulting is leading the Processor-Led Model component (PLM) of the BASICS-II project focused on the development of a processor-associated seed system. The goal of the PLM is to demonstrate that processors can produce planting material that features profit-maximizing processing characteristics for their farms and outgrowers in an economically sustainable and replicable manner.

Anticipated Impact: To provide farmers with access to affordable, quality-assured seeds of the cassava varieties in demand by local food and processor markets through the establishment of a commercially viable seed value chain operating across breeder, foundation, and commercial seed levels.

Funding Partner: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Key project objectives: YIIFSWA aims to increase the availability, accessibility and affordability of improved yam varieties in eight yam-producing states, through the establishment of a formal seed system that utilizes improved technologies.

Project coverage: Oyo, Enugu, Benue, Nasarawa, Niger, and the FCT in Nigeria. Northern and Brong Ahafo regions in Ghana.

Project duration: 5 years (2017 – 2021)

Consortium members: IITA, NRCRI, Context Global Development, Sahel Consulting, National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), Crop Research Institute, Ghana

Role of Sahel: Sahel has taken a leading role in conducting due diligence on indigenous seed companies in Nigeria to understand their eligibility and willingness to participate in the project. Additionally, in partnership with other project partners, Sahel supports private seed companies through the creation of yam-tailored manuals, promotional activities, and training on sales and marketing. Sahel works actively with private seed company partners to develop robust and tailored plans to support the sales and marketing of high-quality seed yam tubers.

As the YIIFSWA-II project enters its final year of implementation in 2021, project partners are focusing on consolidating key implementation activities, addressing the biggest gaps in EGS and commercial seed yam production, and developing strategies for sustaining the formal yam seed system beyond funding from the donor.

Anticipated Impact:: YIIFSWA II aims to increase the adoption of improved varieties of yam by 340,000 male and female smallholder farmers, in Nigeria and Ghana by the year 2021.

Funding Partner: The Government of the Netherlands

Key project objectives: Focusing on six major value chains including maize, cassava, palm oil, chilli pepper, fish and soya bean, ACMA aims to contribute to the improvement of food security and increase the income of smallholder farmers in the Republic of Benin. This is done through:

  • Enhancing buying-power through trade promotion.
  • Building access to agricultural markets both locally and with neighbouring Nigeria.
  • Facilitating public-private dialogues to improve the overall business environment for cross border trade through an inter-communal framework where private actors (producers, processors, and traders) involved in trade and local governments (mayors) convene to identify and tackle policy and institutional issues that hamper cross border trade with Nigeria.
  • Creating a robust supply management approach by building major storage facilities located at the Nigerian borders.

Project coverage: Republic of Benin and Nigeria

Project duration: Phase 1 (2013 – October 2017) | Phase 2 (2017 – 2021)

Consortium members: International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC), Care International-Benin/Togo, Royal KIT, Benin Consulting Group International, and Sahel Consulting.

Role of Sahel: Sahel provides comprehensive market intelligence and trade facilitation through the creation of linkages between Beninese smallholder farmers’ clusters and agro-processing companies in Nigeria while working with Nigerian and Beninese customs, trade facilitation organizations, and regional banks.

Impact: ACMA worked with local governments and more than 30,000 agricultural producers, traders, and smallholder farmers to facilitate trade with small and medium-sized private enterprises based in Nigeria. The project organized farmers and traders into agribusiness clusters to increase producers’ leverage in negotiating trade deals with companies across the border and in increasing their revenues. Till date, ACMA Benin has:

  • Incorporated 32,015 economic actors, of which 51% were women, and 431 organizations into 41 agribusiness clusters linked to specific value chains.
  • Established 91 formal contracts between economic actors in Benin and Nigeria.
  • Increased the amount of products marketed to Nigeria and Benin by actors in the ACMA-supported municipalities by 23,057 tons (worth 6,282 million FCFA, or U.S. $11.85 million)

Funding Partner: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Key project objectives: NDDP aimed to improve the livelihoods of smallholder dairy farmers in Nigeria by enhancing the productivity of their cattle and integrating them into the formal dairy value chain. It also sought to demonstrate the proof of scale of processor-led dairy development initiatives.

Project coverage: Kano and Oyo states, Nigeria

Project duration: 2 years (2017 – 2019)

Role of Sahel:Sahel played a leading role as the overall program coordinator between the donors, the private sector implementing partners, the government and other key stakeholders engaged in the project. Sahel co-designed program intervention strategies and supported processors in field implementation activities. Sahel also managed the external studies commissioned as part of the project, as well as monitoring and evaluation activities related to the program.

Impact: NDDP developed interventions that positively affected the lives of over 30,000 people especially women, enhancing their livelihoods, and contributing to the emergence of a viable local dairy industry. Through the program, Sahel and its dairy processor partners:

  • Integrated over 2,000 new dairy households into the formal dairy value chain in Nigeria.
  • Trained over 6,000 dairy farmers on various good dairy management topics such as hygienic milking practices, dairy cattle nutrition, etc.
  • Inseminated over 3,400 cows, translating into approximately 1,400 crossbreeds.
  • Supported local crop farmers with access to land in order for them to become commercial fodder producers. Through this, they established over 500ha of pastureland to produce hay and silage for onward sales to dairy farmers.
  • Built over 50 solar-powered boreholes to improve participating communities’ access to clean water.
  • Distributed 2,500 milk cans to participating farmers to preserve milk quality during transportation.
  • Established 1 new milk collection center in Oyo State and 4 new milk collection points in Kano State
  • Established a robust milk-evacuation system that incorporated 7 large trucks in both states to improve milk aggregation and evacuation to the processing plants.