The main activities under this component focus on working with economic-oriented groups who have identified business opportunities and profitability as their priority focus. Farmers with surplus crop production will receive increased prices and profitably sell larger volumes of crop products through expanded access to Ugandan and regional markets.

Sub Component B.1: Improved Market Access Process

PRELNOR is developing agricultural produce marketing capacity in the project area to increase the volumes of quality agricultural produce traded in the region and facilitate fair prices leading to better profits and income to smallholder farmers.

Output B.1.a : Effective management systems for satellite markets and bulk markets established

Market stakeholder platforms (MSP) are being formed to facilitate and support the development of market facilities for aggregation and bulk trading at district/sub-county and sub regional levels.

The MSPs comprise of all main market stakeholders in each district, DFAs, produce traders’ associations, processors association, savings and credit cooperative society (SACCOS), and local governments.

The MSPs roles include:

  • Mobilizing the communities to participate in the market access activities including development of aggregation points or bulk markets;
  • Leading the process of selection of the appropriate sites and structure for the market facilities;
  • Facilitating dialogue with the local government and other actors;
  • Undertaking a feasibility study of and developing a business case for project investment to improve market access, particularly through investment in aggregation points / markets and/or larger sub-regional bulk markets; and,
  • Ensuring the accountability of the market facilities established.

The project will also facilitate the establishment of a sub-regional MSP forum bringing together the MSPs from the different districts. The MSP forum will enable interaction and knowledge sharing between the individual MSPs and facilitate dialogue amongst all members, especially policy dialogue with the local and central governments. The MSP forum will include other relevant regional or national organizations involved in agricultural product markets.

Output B.1.b : Capacity of market-oriented farmer groups and youth built in improved post-harvest handling (PHH) practices and/or value addition

Farmers, agribusiness groups and young rural women and men use improved post-harvest handling (PHH) practices and/or value adding to link with or work within inputs and product markets.

Activities include:

  • Specialized training in entrepreneurship, market identification and development, business planning,
  • Expanding businesses or investment in advanced PHH and / or value adding equipment;
  • Facilitation of linkages with business development service (BDS) providers, local financial service providers, input and transport service providers, agro-dealers, contract farming/production organizations, traders and end-users;
  • Technical training, market development and appropriate mentoring support to develop PHH and value adding (V/A) activities, including piloting and demonstrating new PHH and V/A technologies and approaches; and, where necessary,
  • Capacity building for implementing service providers and supervising agencies. A specialized service provider will be recruited to implement the above activities under the supervision of Local Government officers and the PMU.

Output B.1.c : . Improved collection and dissemination of crop, livestock and input market information to farmers

Relevant crop, livestock and input market information collected from production basins and used. One of the major issues for market users when undertaking their transactions is the lack of data on prices and volumes which leads to risky, unfaithful and unfair commercial relationships between market stakeholders. PRELNOR will train market stakeholders to access and use agricultural market information systems (AMIS) for commodities and linked with existing AMIS service providers.

Other AMIS activities include:

  • Promotional activities to publicize the services and link the services to the newly established bulk and satellite markets;
  • Creating new and visible tools for accessing market information such as market boards posted in the newly established bulk and satellite markets for increasing transparency; and,
  • Ensuring that the proposed AMIS links the satellite markets, bulk markets, producer associations, traders associations and farmer groups for collection and dissemination of market information. Market management companies at the newly established aggregation centres and bulk markets will facilitate collection and dissemination of market information.

Sub Component B.2 Market Access Infrastructure 

This sub-component aims to improve access to markets, facilitate more competitive pricing, reduce transaction costs and increase farmers’ income through improvements to community access roads (CAR) and market infrastructure at selected strategic sites. The identification of infrastructure investments has been undertaken in a participatory and demand-driven manner based on a set of criteria to ensure that the project resources reach the intended target groups.

Following these investments, disadvantaged communities will have increased opportunities for economic growth and improved livelihoods through improved market access. It is estimated that benefits from the investments will reach a total of about 108,000 rural households in the nine districts.

Output B.2.a. : Existing community access roads upgraded or new roads constructed in under serviced areas

An estimated 1,550 km of CARs will be constructed or rehabilitated, including all the required ancillary structures as per the requirements of the District Class III roads standard of the Ministry of Works and Transport (MoWT). CARs that are eligible are those selected from the project area sub-counties (excluding town councils and municipalities). In addition to integrating emerging climate parameters and projections into road design, the project is working with the MoWT to update road construction standards to take climate change considerations into account.

The activities designed under this Sub-component target pre-existing sites, routes and alignments and therefore are not expected to lead to any major environmental disruption. To ensure that the communities benefiting from construction of the CARs participate fully in the design and construction process, road construction committees have been formed for each of the planned CARs with members drawn from villages that the CAR passes through.

Output B.2.b : Market structures constructed at selected strategic sites

Rehabilitation/construction of 11 strategically located market facilities is planned based on the consultations with the MSP members including market users and local government needs. Three strategic marketplaces for bulk trading will be built/upgraded in Gulu, Kitgum and Elegu border point. Eight satellite market places have been identified in project districts. The emphasis is on facilitating the rapid receipt, sale and transshipment of agricultural products from the project area.