SEIFAC (Smallholder Economic Interest Farmers Agricultural Cooperative) major object is to organize the Nigerian Smallholder Farmers who are scattered, confused and ravage by hunger and poverty like a stranded Sheep without a herd and flock. A group of Smallholder Farmers analyzed the worrisome situation of the Nigerian Smallholder Farmers and came up with the strategy of cluster farming called Agricultural Production Cluster (Agro-PC) having understudied the concept from developed and developing countries for a good number of years and believe the adoption of same in the Nigerian context shall proffer a lasting solution to the plights of the Smallholder Farmers. They domiciled the ownership of SEIFAC in its members. It is therefore the cooperative of the Smallholder Farmers, by the Smallholder Farmers and for the Smallholder Farmers.
SEIFAC has carefully analyzed and reviewed the trend of agriculture globally and has come to the conclusion that agriculture in the twenty-first century is reinventing itself as a new global business reshaped by globalization, standardization, high-value production, massive growth in demand (both for the food and the biofuel industries), retail and packaging innovations, and a ramp up in efficiency. Faced with constant productivity and market pressures, the “new agriculture” needs new tools to enhance its competitiveness and innovation capacity. One of these tools is the promotion of clusters. An agro-based cluster (AC) is simply a concentration of producers, agribusinesses and institutions that are engaged in the same agricultural or agro-industrial sub-sector, and interconnect and build value networks when addressing common challenges and pursuing common opportunities.
Cluster Farming initiatives are starting to be seen as a key approach to help advance the agricultural sector of many countries. The promotion or inducement of such clusters has various advantages relative to other approaches. In particular, cluster approaches recognize that all the actors in the agricultural value chain are often more innovative and successful when they interact with supporting institutions and other actors in the supply chain. By promoting vertical and horizontal links between local agricultural enterprises, as well as supporting relationships between them and facilitating organizations (e.g. local governments, research institutes and universities), cluster policies promote the diffusion of innovation, as well as the use and generation of important local externalities. Cluster Farming can also enhance access to credit facilities, machinery, quality inputs, advisory and extension services, storage and processing and markets. Cluster policies are argued to be crucial for small-scale farmers and agribusiness, as they enable them to engage in higher productivity, and more market oriented and higher value-added production. Accordingly, central and local governments have discovered that cluster promotion is a valuable tool to support agricultural enterprises in their territory and help them link to global agricultural value chains in a more efficient and sustainable manner.
- To attain ‘self-food sufficiency’, peaceful and prosperous, effective and cohesive Nigeria by the Smallholder Farmers community.
- To position the smallholder farmers on a pedestal in which the Smallholder Farmer would benefit from every intervention performance.
- To augment the incremental incomes of Smallholder Farmers by helping them to increase their crop productivity through the proper organization of farmers into viable cooperatives who on extension shall go into cluster farming and educate them on the importance of agriculture being the economic mainstream of any developing nation. Lead them into forming enterprise base clusters to gain group dynamics and internal economies of scale.
- SEIFAC’s aim is to make these clusters/cooperative societies to become economically and democratically strong for professionalized services to the farming community to ensure an empowered rural Nigeria and Africa at large by lifting the Smallholder Farmers out of avoidable poverty.
- To promote sustainable and equitable agriculture and rural prosperity through effective organization of Smallholder Farmers to attain self-efficiency and democracy to access external credit support, related services, institutional development and other innovative initiatives.
SEIFAC’s mission is “to enable the Nigerian Smallholder Farmers to prosper through timely supply of reliable, high quality agricultural inputs and services in an environmentally sustainable manner and to undertake other activities to improve their welfare”.
To Represent, lobby, mobilize, organize, manage and advocate for Smallholder Farmers’ interest and build their capacities to engage in crop enterprises that would be to their best interest. To organize Smallholder Farmers to farm in clusters to leverage on the collective internal economies of scale of cluster dynamics.
- To provide to farmers high-quality fertilizers at the right time and in adequate quantities to increase crop productivity.
- To make plants energy efficient and continually review various schemes to conserve energy.
- Commitment to health, safety, environment and forestry development to enrich the quality of community life.
- Commitment to social responsibilities for a strong social fabric.
- To institutionalize core values and create a culture of team building, empowerment and innovation which would help in the incremental growth of employees and enable achievement of strategic objectives.
- Foster a culture of trust, openness and mutual concern to make working, a stimulating and challenging experience for stakeholders.
- Building a value driven organization with an improved and responsive customer focus. A true commitment to transparency, accountability and integrity in principle and practice.
- To acquire, assimilate and adopt reliable, efficient and cost-effective technologies.
- Sourcing quality planting materials for the production of produce at economical cost by entering into Joint Ventures within Nigeria and outside Africa and the wide world.
- To ensure growth in core and non-core sectors.
- A true cooperative society committed for fostering cooperative movement in the country. Emerging as a dynamic organization, focusing on strategic strengths, seizing opportunities for generating and building upon past success, enhancing earnings to maximize the shareholders’ value.
SEIFAC is a multi-crops producer, processor and marketing Smallholder Economic Interest Farmers Agricultural Cooperative that connects Smallholder Farmers that cultivates: these nine (9) crops namely Rice, Maize, Sesame, Cassava, Yam, Groundnuts, Bambaranuts, Sorghum and Soybean in the States of the Federation and FCT Abuja, to farm in clusters and to leverage on the collective internal economies of scale of cluster dynamics in order to lift themselves out of avoidable poverty.
In pursuit of its growth and development, SEIFAC envisions to cumulatively cultivate 10,000,000ha of Rice, Maize, Sesame, Cassava, Yam, Groundnuts, Bambaranuts, Sorghum and Soybean and harvest 40,000,000,000 metric tons of commodities across her nine (9) enterprises namely Rice, Maize, Sesame, Cassava, Yam, Groundnuts, Bambaranuts, Sorghum and Soybean at the end of the 2021 wet cropping season. This will clear the coast for planning and implementation of the following cropping seasons and subsequent membership up-scaling using our online registration tool.
SEIFAC’s new Corporate Plan titled ‘Vision-2030’ will be guided by the following objects:
- Achieving specific targets in procurement and installation of Agro-processing plants.
- Buying back of members farm produce for processing as a measure of eliminating glut at harvest seasons.
- Procurement of agricultural mechanization equipment for production expansion and sustainability.
- Clearing of lands for yearly allocation to her members for enterprise production.
- Establishing of irrigation schemes for the cluster farms for an all-year-round production
- Manufacture of new Fertilizer products, and Agro-Chemicals Projects.
- Establishing of Agricultural Insurance company for the insurance of her members cluster and individual agro-enterprises.
- Establishing of Farmers Pension Scheme.
- Establishing of Farmers Mortgage Bank.
- Establishing of Microfinance Bank for her members banking service right in their hamlets in their rural dwellings.
- SEIFAC MFB Mortgage when established shall ensure Smallholder Farmer benefit from the Housing and Shelter Scheme for the Smallholder Farmers community.
- Funding of farmers production enterprises through strategic Alliances.
- Establishing of Soil Laboratory.
- Establishing of Seed Laboratory .
- Setup a Credit Rating System for our constituent Cooperative Societies and individual Smallholder Farmers base on their past transactions with SEIFAC for their credit worthiness.
MAJOR SALIENT FEATURES OF OUR ‘VISION’
The salient features of our ‘Vision’ document are as under:
- To remain the largest agricultural cooperative in Nigeria and Africa at large
- To stand as a Nigerian and an African Leader in Smallholder Farmers network. Implement strategies for sustainability of smallholder farmers self-food sufficiency through doing agriculture as business.
- Maximizing the synergies and dynamics of farming in cluster as smallholder farmers.
- Enhancing presence in International markets through Strategic Joint Ventures and Synergistic Acquisitions.
- Diversification in value additions along our enterprises for financial sustainability.
- Promoting organic farming for the sustainability of our ecosystem and soil fertility.
- To help individual Cooperative Societies and their constituent members become economically strong, professionally managed and to equip the Farming Community with advanced agricultural practices for improved Productivity, to ensure an Empowered Rural Africa.
- To achieve food security for all and enhance the livelihood of the rural poor whose occupation is mainly farming.
- To create market linkage for marketing of Smallholders Farmers commodity at the best prices for continuity of doing agriculture as business.