Goodwell Investments led the round with the participation of existing seed investors Global Partnerships and FINCA Ventures.
This investor capital accelerates the ability of Good Nature Agro to build up essential value-added processing infrastructure in Central and Eastern Zambia, to accelerate the growth of its full-farm extension services for smallholders, and to connect these farmers to large-scale agribusinesses and food processors seeking trouble-free sourcing, as well as to further their seed breeding programme.
Good Nature Agro (GNA) is a social enterprise that partners with smallholder farmers to improve their productivity through soil-enriching legumes farming and links them to high-value legume markets to move farmers firmly into the middle class. Good Nature Farmers are currently net three to four times as much as they earn for cash crops, like bute, on the same land. Legumes are valuable to farmers in the long term because they increase soil fertility by replacing nitrogen used by other crops and are resilient to climate change.
In 2020, GNA will support 15,000 farmers with vital extension services, customised input packages, financial planning and target setting frameworks, and guaranteed offtake contracts. The company has developed an innovative sales and manufacturing model called Source.
Using the Source model, GNA first enters into agreements with food processing companies and large-scale agribusinesses requiring specialty legumes crops based on processing specifications and then contracts with outgrower farmers’ networks to grow these legumes from specialised GNA seeds. This interlinked contracting approach enables GNA to introduce larger groups of smallholder farmers to formal seed varieties that deliver better yields, more desirable characteristics and higher prices.
“We believe that every farm – regardless of size – deserves a partner who sees enough value in their capacity and their dreams to engage with them as individuals and families. Our focus on personal advice and service delivery to farmers even as we scale is the major to our social impact and our momentum,” said Carl Jensen, co-founder and CEO of Good Nature Agro.
“Agriculture in Zambia and Southern Africa, much like the rest of the continent, has an enormous social and economic footprint. However, the region’s full agricultural potential remains largely untapped due to supply chain challenges and low processing capacity,” added Mercy Zulu, Investment Associate of Goodwell Investments.