Equator Commodities Impex Limited
Established: September 2020
Business Description: Equator Commodities Index is the grain arm of Equator Seeds Limited and its mandate is to off-take farmer produce/ grain including maize, beans, sesame, cowpeas, soybeans and sorghum.
Current areas of operation: Acholi, Lango and West Nile sub-regions, head office in Gulu, Northern Uganda
How CASA and Equator Commodities worked together
Project title: Strengthen SME capacity to access finance & Investment to start/ expand their businesses and investment in sesame processing that is aimed at increasing efficiency and engagement of smallholders
CASA supported Equator Commodities to become investment-ready so that the company can attract funds from commercial and impact investors to finance their capital investment programme (warehouse/silos, and agro-processing machinery) and the working capital required to expand its operations. CASA also supported the company to implement the Village Agent model through which the company was able to identify, recruit and train Village Agents as well as training of farmers on good agronomic practices (GAPs) and post-harvest handling (PHH) thus improving the quality and quantity of sesame produced by smallholder farmers in its network.
CASA work complete: December 2021
Total cost of technical assistance package: £182,010 [£51.436 provided by CASA]
village agents trained
4,235 smallholder farmers
(male 1,883 female 2,352) trained in agronomy to improve sesame production
of improved variety of sesame seeds provided to 5,000 smallholder farmers on credit
Number of smallholder farmers in supply chain: 4,235 trained directly; 33,000 trained through network of 150 village agents; 15,000 geo-mapped in database
Production volumes: 2,000 tonnes of sesame aggregated from smallholder farmers during the course of the project