Alhassan Mumuni Baba had a tractor that he used to farm his 30 acres of maize, soybeans, and rice in northern Ghana’s Gushegu Municipality. The tractor was old and broke down way too often, requiring costly repairs that increased Mumuni’s operational costs. This affected his farm’s yield and prevented him from expanding his acreage.

As an outgrower business (OB) owner, this also significantly limited the number of smallholder farmers he could serve. With his unreliable, increasingly expensive tractor, Mumuni could only serve 90 of the 400 farmers in his area, covering a mere 150 acres. The failing machine kept him from providing timely land preparation service for his outgrowers. The services he was able to provide did little to help his income, as most of it went to cover the cost of repairs.

Investing time and money on the old tractor and struggling to serve the other farms meant Mumuni’s own yield was low. He made only 1.25MT/ha for maize and 1.0MT/ha for soybeans because he was late in preparing his own land. This yield was not enough to allow him to invest in his farming business or recover costs from maintaining the tractor.

Project Helps Outgrower Access Finance to Improve His Business

In 2017, Mumuni applied for and was awarded a grant for a new John Deere tractor and accessories through the ACDI/VOCA-implemented Feed the Future Agricultural Development and Value Chain Enhancement project (ADVANCE II). The project connected him with a non-banking financial institution, Sinapi-Aba Savings and Loans Ltd., to help him secure funding for the 30 percent financial contribution required by the grant.

Mumuni received his tractor in 2018, and has been growing his business operations ever since. During the 2018-2019 production season, he provided reliable and timely land preparation services to 250 outgrower farmers on credit and to 150 outgrowers on cash payment, increasing the land he farmed for his outgrowers by 140 hectares.

Mumuni also recovered 33MT of maize and soybeans from his outgrowers as payment. He also expanded his services, threshing 70 MT of maize for his outgrowers and receiving 7 MT of produce as payment. As a result of this boom in business, Mumuni grew his own farm to a total of 30.4 hectares and saw his maize yield blossom from 1.25MT/ha to 3.7MT/ha.

Alhassan Mumuni Baba is now the chairman of the Gushegu Outgrower Network. He is actively involved in agriculture-related advocacy and works to promote the growth and expansion of outgrower businesses in the municipality.

“Ever since I received the John Deere tractor, I have made a lot of savings and reaped so many benefits. I now have the capacity . . . to work with lead firms such as AVNASH and Agricare who are major rice and maize processors in Ghana. I am currently working with these two companies on outgrower scheme support and commodity trading.”

Alhassan Mumuni Baba, project-supported outgrower

Learn more about our work in Ghana here.

Learn more about our ADVANCE II Activity here.