Food systems across Africa are changing and agricultural supply chains need to adapt. To be successful, policies and approaches need to be reflective of the local context and support the development and growth of local food systems that can integrate into national, regional and local supply chains. Ensuring a sustainable supply of food hinges on reducing the reliance on imports and increasing the efficiency of local markets in Africa. Small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are critical for this transformation.

  • Increasing food security
  • Increasing incomes
  • Creating jobs

IDH’s Value Chain Development model focuses on Africa and is aimed at creating economically viable, inclusive and resilient agricultural value chains. The model includes several steps, including increase investments, know-how and investability of the SMEs) to improve resiliency, independence and the ability to build and strengthen a local food system, increase the intra-Africa trade and create a large number of jobs that supports the needs of people in Africa.

We have witnessed the transformation of local SMEs, and the farmers they source from, into competitive businesses that meet global standards, attract competitive prices for their products, and create sustainable jobs, particularly for women and youth.

Kebba Colley, Director for Value Chain Transformation at IDH

How Value Chain Development works for companies and their African supply chains


Value chains, where a country has comparative advantage are identified and supported to increase commercialization, improve operations to produce high quality products that are price competitive.


Working with retailers, multinational brands and traders to build their local supply-base and address challenges in developing reliable African supply bases that meet their volume and quality specifications.

Current value chain development work

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Through working together, we support systems change