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Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa

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AGRA, formerly known as the Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa is an African-led African-based organization that seeks to catalyse Agriculture Transformation in Africa. AGRA is focused on putting smallholder farmers at the centre of the continent's growing economy by transforming agriculture from a solitary struggle to survive into farming as a business that thrives. As the sector that employs the majority of Africa's people, nearly all of them small-scale farmers, AGRA recognizes that developing smallholder agriculture into a productive, efficient, and sustainable system is essential to ensuring food security, lifting millions out of poverty, and driving equitable growth across the continent.

AGRA is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, from where a team of African scientists, economists and business leaders supports its country operations and African governments. It was funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation.[1]

The institution also has offices in 11 African countries, under the management of country leads, who oversee the deployment of the organisation's national strategy.[2]


AGRA was founded in 2006 as an Africa-based and -led organization that works within the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Program (CAADP), Africa's policy framework for agricultural transformation, wealth creation, food security and nutrition, economic growth and prosperity.[3][4]

Former UN Secretary General, the Late Kofi Annan, was the organization's first chairman and he served until 2013 when Econet Wireless Founder Strive Masiyiwa took over.[3][5] Masiyiwa's term ended in 2019. He was succeeded by former Ethiopian Prime Minister H.E. Hailemariam Desalegn.[6]

AGRA has 211 employees from 24 nationalities of whom 42% are female and 58% male. About 61% of AGRA's workers are technical staff.[7] The organization is led by President Dr. Agnes Kalibata, who has held the office since 2014. She is deputized by Prof. Hamadi Boga, Former Principal Secretary, in the State Department of Crop Development and Agricultural Research in Kenya and Jonathan Said.[8][9]

AGRA is among the key conveners of the annual Africa Food Systems Forum (AFS Forum), a gathering that brings together presidents, heads of state and government, ministers, scientists, farmers, private sector payers and members of the civil society to chart the way forward for African agriculture. The AGRF is now its 11th year.[10]

Countries of Operation[edit]

AGRA has prioritized 11 countries in three agro-ecologies:[11][12]

  • The Guinea Savannah Zone: Ghana, Nigeria, Mali and Burkina Faso
  • The East African Highlands: Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania
  • The Miombo Woodland: Malawi and Mozambique


AGRA's strategy is to double the yields and incomes of 30 million smallholder households in 11 countries by the end of 2021.[13] The organization's impact is felt by:

  • 9 million smallholder farmer households, who are witnessing increased food security through AGRA's direct interventions.
  • 21 million smallholder farmer households that are benefiting indirectly from AGRA's partnerships, support to governments and Investments that unlock the engagement and power of the private sector.[14]

According to the AGRA's Half-Year 2020 M&E Progress Report,[14] 10.14 million farmers (76% of target) are benefitting from extension activities and 7.72 million farmers adopted improved and yield enhancing technologies. Farmers benefitting from AGRA's support now reported an increase in the number of months with sufficient food supply from 9.2 in 2016 to 11 months in 2019.

Strategic Interventions[edit]

AGRA's strategy is delivered through interventions in four priority areas; input systems, resilience building, innovative finance, and policy/country support.[15]

Input systems

Working with both public and private sector players to develop the systems required for the sustained availability, delivery and adoption of improved seeds and fertilizer with a focus on getting these inputs into the hands of farmers.[16]

Resilience building

Promoting interventions that enhance the resilience of the production system to climate change and climate variability. This is achieved by developing more efficient marketing systems, introducing post-harvest technologies to close yield gaps and ensure farmers can sustainably sell quality to consumer markets.[17]

Innovative finance

Enabling local agri-businesses to access markets, support local and national financial institutions. This includes providing affordable financing to smallholder farmers and local SMEs.[18][19]

Policy and country support

Supporting governments in the 11 focus countries to strengthen the national capacities to deepen and sustain the gains made through policy decisions and encourage significant investments of public resources into the agriculture sector.

Strategic partners[edit]

AGRA is primarily guided by its partners across the continent, starting with the leadership of African states through the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) coordination under the Malabo declaration.[20][21] AGRA works closely with African governments, particularly in its eleven countries of operation, to whom it is accountable under national ownership of development leadership and governance. AGRA works under national development plans and National Agriculture Investment Plans (NAIPs). It also works in partnership with other national actors in the private sector, farmers organizations, the academic and research community, and civil society.[22]



Publications by the Oakland Institute have suggested that AGRA was planned without African voices, and imposes quick-fix technological solutions on complex and historically deep social issues, that it will impose a regime in which farmers lose power over their own seeds and are forced to buy them back from large corporations year after year. This system may also contribute to the marginalization of women.[25][26] The conference compiled a set of papers containing various arguments: There's also suggestions that hunger in Africa results more from poverty than from actual food shortages; people will not be able to buy any additional food that gets produced without larger systemic changes. [citation needed][27]

In 2021, the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa released an open letter with many signatories stating that AGRA had "failed in its mission to increase productivity and incomes and reduce food insecurity".[28]


Africa Agriculture Status Report – An annual publication highlighting the major trends in African agriculture, the drivers of those trends, and the emerging challenges that Africa's food systems face.[29]

Food Security Monitor – A monthly publication providing the food security outlook in AGRA's focus countries of around Africa.[30]

AGRA Annual Reports.[31]


  1. ^ "Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa". The Rockefeller Foundation. Retrieved 2021-06-15.
  2. ^ "Africa seeks the cooperation of Latin America and the Caribbean in the areas of export development, soil recovery and reforestation". IICA.INT. Retrieved 2021-06-15.
  3. ^ a b "New Agriculturist: News brief - Kofi Annan leads Africa's new 'Green Revolution'". www.new-ag.info. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  4. ^ "The farmers' voice in agricultural development". Alliance magazine. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  5. ^ "Strive Masiyiwa - Chair Emeritus". Nutrition International. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  6. ^ "Ex-Ethiopian PM on why Rwanda was named new home for continental agric body". The New Times | Rwanda. 2019-11-26. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  7. ^ "MESSAGE FROM OUR PRESIDENT – AGRA Annual Report 2019". Archived from the original on 2021-05-06. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  8. ^ "Leadership". United Nations. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  9. ^ "IBRAF is going to develop a leadership program in partnership with the Alliance for the Green Revolution in Africa - IBRAF | Brazil Africa Institute | Instituto Brasil África". 2020-01-30. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
  10. ^ "AGRF Virtual Summit 2020". AGRF. Archived from the original on 2021-01-19. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  11. ^ "GAIN and AGRA to partner for food and nutrition security". Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN). Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  12. ^ "Focus Countries". AGRA. Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  13. ^ Kim, Sung Kyu (2020-10-13). "Does the African Green Revolution include smallholder farmers?". STEPS Centre. Retrieved 2021-06-09.
  14. ^ a b "AGRA half-year 2020 M&E Progress Report" (PDF). United States Agency for International Development. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-06-09. Retrieved 2021-06-09.
  15. ^ "Microsoft collaborates with AGRA to digitize agriculture in 11 African countries". Africa Business Communities. Retrieved 2021-06-21.
  16. ^ "New partnership inked with AGRA to boost improved technology uptake in Africa's agriculture – ICRISAT". www.icrisat.org. Retrieved 2021-06-21.
  17. ^ Mboga, Jael. "AGRA, Microsoft in new deal to solve agriculture problems using technology - FarmKenya Initiative". Farm Kenya Initiative. Retrieved 2021-06-21.
  18. ^ Akinyi, Maureen. "AGRA financing model sees 230,000 farmers access loans - FarmKenya Initiative". Farm Kenya Initiative. Retrieved 2021-06-21.
  19. ^ "NIRSAL: CBN, AGRA new project to create affordable loans for small holder farmers". Vanguard News. 2011-07-24. Retrieved 2021-06-21.[permanent dead link]
  20. ^ "African Green Revolution – Theme 3". Future agricultures. Retrieved 2021-06-24.
  21. ^ "Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agricultural Growth | AUDA-NEPAD". www.nepad.org. Retrieved 2021-06-24.
  22. ^ "Green Revolution in Africa Has Sown Agricultural Success, Report Finds". Philanthropy News Digest. Archived from the original on 2016-09-08.
  23. ^ "New cassava varieties that withstand deadly viral diseases released in Tanzania". IITA. 24 January 2012. Retrieved 5 February 2012.
  24. ^ Hultman, Tami (24 January 2012). "Africa: Aid Can Spur 'Historic Progress' - Bill Gates". AllAfrica. Retrieved 5 February 2012.
  25. ^ Austin-Evelyn, Katherine (16 June 2011). "The 'keepers of seed': The impact of the 'Green Revolution' in Africa on female farmers". Consultancy Africa Intelligence. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 2 February 2012.
  26. ^ Melissa Moore (2011). Anuradha Mittal (ed.). Voices From Africa (PDF). Oakland: Oakland Institute. Retrieved 2 February 2012.
  27. ^ Holt-Giménez, Eric. "Ten Reasons Why AGRA Will not Solve Poverty and Hunger in Africa" (PDF). foodfirst.org. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2019-06-19. Retrieved 21 February 2021.
  28. ^ Sigei, Julius (22 January 2022). "AGRA's Green Revolution Has Failed, Critics Say". The Elephant. Retrieved 2 February 2022.
  29. ^ "Africa Agriculture Status Report 2020 Launched". massp.ifpri.info. Archived from the original on 2021-07-09. Retrieved 2021-07-09.
  30. ^ "Food Security Monitor". AGRA. Retrieved 2021-07-09.
  31. ^ "Annual Reports". AGRA. Retrieved 2021-07-09.

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