The AGCO Agriculture Foundation Launch
As a public company and global citizen, AGCO has already been driving positive change through corporate social responsibility (CSR) for decades by providing solutions to our farmers feeding the world. AGCO CSR efforts have a powerful impact on our local communities through our efforts to improve farmer education, as well as improving access to mechanization and agricultural projects. Such efforts will continue.
The AGCO Agriculture Foundation (AAF) is a testament to AGCO’s commitment to ensure that we also reach our future farmers in marginalized communities. Our objective is to develop and expand benevolent initiatives that contribute to global food security, support sustainable agriculture development and have a positive footprint, particularly in certain developing countries.
The creation of the AAF reflects AGCO’s support of specific UN Sustainable Development Goals that seek to end hunger and develop needed agricultural infrastructures. As the demand for nutrition—and especially protein—changes, so are our technical and philanthropic solutions changing. As a private foundation, the AAF will complement some of AGCO’s existing efforts, while developing new strategic partnerships and impactful initiatives towards Zero Hunger of its own.
Feeding a Hungry
Our purpose is to help improve farmers’ livelihood by helping them do more with less—generate higher yields, reduce post-harvest loss and increase their efficiency—to help them feed a growing and hungry world. We know this is not an easy task. Ensuring sufficient food supply while addressing resource and environmental limitations will take innovative solutions, hard work and global leadership. As a leader in transformative agriculture, we continue to focus on improving farm income and yield in every market where we live and work.
Spotlight on AFRICA
AGCO has taken a holistic approach to advancing African agriculture through the identification of key challenges and barriers to growth in the industry and the development of innovative solutions to overcome them. We are making major investments in Africa to engineer food security and support sustainable productivity. And as a “first mover” in innovation, we are meeting the challenge to grow more food with fewer resources head-on.
Serving Africa from Africa
Our new Africa headquarters opened officially in Johannesburg, South Africa, in May 2018, inaugurating a new era of focus on the continent’s vital potential as the breadbasket of the world. The opening is part of AGCO’s continually developing infrastructure on the continent. We have established a parts warehouse, the AGCO Future Farm and Training Center in Lusaka, Zambia, and a Joint Venture to produce tractors in Algeria.
In a further significant move, AGCO is developing involvement in the Agri-Parks project, an exciting initiative. This networked innovation system brings together agro-production, processing, logistics, marketing, training and extension services to drive agricultural production and rural economic transformation across Africa in a holistic way. Specifically, agri-parks involve establishing a community where growing, seeding, processing, raising animals, establishing hatcheries, and selling the final product to the market all take place in a vertically integrated system.
Farm in a Box (FIAB)
An out-of-the-box concept by AGCO, Farm in a Box (FIAB) offers small-hold farmers the tractors and machinery required to carry out the basics of land preparation, planting and crop transport, plus parts and workshop tools for service and maintenance. AGCO training programs provide additional support, covering the operation, maintenance and repair of the equipment as well as agronomy. Importantly, Farm in a Box takes full advantage of the latest telemetry and mobile technology to enable remote monitoring of the equipment through mobile apps. This high level of monitoring, support and guidance sets the concept apart, delivering tangible advantages to farmers across the continent.
Financing Africa within Africa
Africa needs affordable financing of farm machinery. In fact, only 95 of 900 banks surveyed in sub-Saharan Africa provide financing to farmers. In response, we have established a Retail Finance Partnership to offer low-rate financing so that Zambian farmers can purchase vital farm equipment. The new partnership between AGCO, our national distributor, BHBW Zambia Limited, and the Zambia National Commercial Bank Plc (Zanaco) will provide retail financial solutions for farmers purchasing Massey Ferguson machinery.
Teaching Africa for Africa
The AGCO Future Farm and Training Center in Zambia is designed to elevate resident expertise within the many nations of Africa—drawing farmers and agribusiness professionals from across the continent to explore our latest innovations and relevant technologies.
We have also taken action to address the skills shortage in junior management within the agricultural supply chain. Last year, we launched the AGCO Agribusiness Qualification (AAQ), a two-year agribusiness program at Strathmore University in Kenya. The program is focused on developing the talent, leadership and strategic expertise to further drive African agricultural prosperity.