Ethiopia is Africa’s second largest producer of wheat after South Africa and the largest producer in sub-Saharan Africa. Currently the most productive wheat-producing woredas are approaching almost 40 to 50 quintals per hectare, whereas the mean is in the range of 18 to 25. Wheat production, by almost 4.3 million smallholders across Ethiopia, remains subsistence-based since much of it (73 percent for all cereals) is consumed on-farm, with little surplus available for downstream utilization. In addition to on-farm consumption, a significant amount (20 percent for cereals) is lost due to post-harvest handling and storage problems. It is estimated that about 4 percent of the cereals marketed by smallholders reach the industrial sector1.
1 Ministry of Trade and Industry / Minstry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MoTI/MoARD), 2009
Due to production shortfalls, Ethiopia complements its domestic production by importing wheat annually. This deficiency is projected to grow, given the rise in demand for wheat-based products. The objectives of AGP-AMDe for the wheat VC remain focused on replacing the large quantity of imports that are required to meet the increasing demand for wheat based products in Ethiopia. The strategy is primarily centered on stimulating the cooperatives and agribusinesses within the value chain. This strategy is aligned with the GOE’s directive to prioritize the reduction and eventual elimination of wheat imports by increasing on farm productivity through improved input delivery systems, availability of improved seeds, warehousing and logistics, access to credit and agronomy services.
As a result of the market linkage technical assistance and facilitation by AGP-AMDe the value of the incremental sales of wheat to processors and wholesalers for the past year is USD $216,967.