Facing rising costs of barley, beverage companies have shifted to sourcing locally grown sorghum in several West African countries, including Nigeria. Recognizing this commercial demand, MARKETS has linked sorghum farmers to the Aba Malting Plant, a USD 67 million automated plant in Abia State which processes up to 30,000 metric tons of sorghum into malt. But sorghum grown in Nigeria by small-scale farmers comes in several varieties, and the variance in quality is often inadequate for the malting plant, which requires large-grain, white fara-fara sorghum.
MARKETS improves the quality of supply for the malting plant and increases farmer income by providing linkages between commercial seed companies and large groups of farmers. The seed companies not only sell farmers the seeds they require to sell to the malting plant, but also serve as production coordinators and buy-back agents, going so far as to transport the crop to the malting plant.
The Institute of Agricultural Research (IAR) and the West Africa Seed Alliance (WASA) are developing a new hybrid sorghum seed to increase farmers’ yields, making sorghum production increasingly competitive, meeting the quality requirements of the malting plant, and increasing farmers’ incomes.
SUCCESSFUL SORGHUM FARMER
After the first year’s success, Alhaji Bala Turawa plans to expand his production and sell to agro-processors, raising his family’s income. More details on the story of his success can be found in the links below: