Programme profile

MADE: Market Development in the Niger Delta - Phases I and II

Programme Index Listing

Main implementer
DAI Europe
Ph I: 2013-18 / Ph II: 2018-20
Total budget
Ph I: USD $18.6 million / Ph II: USD $8.8 m
Annual budget
USD $4 million

Project description / objective

Promote inclusive, pro-poor growth for farmers in rural agricultural markets. 

  • MADE Nigeria (Phase I) was a design-and-implement project focused on increasing the incomes of over 150,000 poor people working in the poultry, agricultural inputs, fisheries, oil palm and cassava sectors in the Niger Delta.
  • MADE II builds on the achievements of MADE I by helping an additional 155,000 poor people increase incomes by an average of 15 percent through market development interventions.
  • It includes a new component, through the Edo State Investment Portfolio (ESIP), to stimulate opportunities for victims of human trafficking and irregular migration in sectors considered to be aspirational including apiculture, micro retailing, feed finishing for small ruminants, waste to wealth and entertainment.

Market systems focus

Agricultural inputs

In the Niger Delta low use of quality agricultural inputs, poor supplies and poor knowledge of Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) reduce yields by about 30 per cent.

  • MADE I facilitated market driven relationships and the use of demand creation activities, such as demonstration plots and field days, to stimulate sustainable growth.
  • MADE II is focusing on strengthening the downstream support market actors (agro-retailers and spray service providers) to respond to, and further stimulate, the growing demand. 

Oil palm

In Nigeria oil palm is an important crop whose products (palm oil and kernel) are used for food and non-food purposes. The Niger Delta region accounts for more than half of in-country production. The sector is characterised by low productivity due to widespread use of inefficient processing technologies and poor production practices leading to imports to bridge supply gap. 


Cassava is an important crop for food and income generation for many farming households in the Niger Delta. The yields of small-scale cassava farmers are lower (8-10 tons/ha) than potential yields (20-25 tons/ha) due to low use of quality agricultural inputs, GAP, and poor-quality planting materials. 


In the Niger Delta about 3 million households keep poultry and small-scale poultry farmers account for 80 per cent of birds. There is 30 per cent mortality rate caused by preventable diseases. There is poor access to improved breeds with lower production cost/husbandry requirements suitable for low-income households. 


An important sector for food security, employment and livelihoods, particularly for small-scale fish farmers. Productivity constraints are largely related to a knowledge and information gap on best production practices and limited access to appropriate and better-quality fish input and advisory services. 

Programme interventions

Agricultural inputs

Embedding GAP training
MADE 1 embedded GAP training into agro-input retailing through network of agronomists, agro-dealers and lead farmers.
MADE II strengthened the capacities of these actors to support and expand delivery of GAP information and inputs to farmers especially in lead firms and industry associations frontline states of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta and Rivers states.

Crop spraying services
MADE II institutionalised training of spraying service providers by leading crop protection companies and their association to enhance safe crop spraying services offered to farmers by local agro-service providers.

Oil palm

Manufacture of processing & marketing of harvesting technologies
MADE I worked with 25 technology providers and 11 agro-equipment marketers to develop, demonstrate and promote the uptake of appropriate processing and harvesting technologies targeted at commercial service providers in oil palm clusters for use by smallholder millers and farmers.  

Better management practices (BMP)
MADE I started promoting increased productivity through BMP to rejuvenate stagnant plantations as well as new plantations to meet increase in demand following the 2016 devaluation of the naira.

Supply of palm seedlings
MADE II focused on increasing private sector participation in supply of improved (and certified) oil palm seedlings to the market, targeting smallholders in addition to continued support for the technology and productivity interventions. 


Outgrower schemes
Strengthen provision of information and access to agricultural inputs through outgrower scheme and partnership between agro-inputs suppliers and cassava processors.  MADE I interventions improved productivity for small scale farmers through private sector initiatives promoting GAP adoption, and linkage to cassava SME processors for offtake of cassava roots for processing into high value packaged food products.

Access to seedlings 
MADE II focused on the development of a commercially-oriented stem multiplication and distribution channel that allowed smallholders to access improved stem varieties and key into opportunities to supply industrial processors. Access to improved cassava stem varieties (Pro-vitamin A and TME 419) creates opportunities for improved yields, household nutrition and commercial relationships with industrial processors with higher capacity mills.  


Veterinary services
MADE I increased access to information on good poultry practices and poultry health products (drugs and vaccines) through veterinary pharmaceutical companies (VPCs) expanding into rural areas to serve small scale poultry farmers. 

MADE II’s intervention focused on deepening the intervention by strengthening the capacities of Village Level Vaccinators (VLVs) and Dealers (VLDs) who play the critical function of delivering inputs and services to farmers while also working to improve smallholders’ access to improved breeds. It strengthened the linkages between the VPCs, distribution companies, and the VLDs.


Aquaculture Service Providers (ASPs)
MADE I developed a cadre of ASPs to promote adoption of best pond management practices and render specialised fee-based training services to fish farmers. It introduced a fee-based service provision model combining business and pond management, through demonstrations of best practices.

With a strong service provision model blooming, MADE II concentrated on improving value driven relationships of market actors for the growth of the aquaculture sector and extend use of improved technologies in riverine and creek locations within the region. The seven strongest ASPs matured into larger companies (Master Aquaculture Service Providers – MASPs) which were able to employ many more staff, broaden their outreach and deepen their product/service delivery.

Smoking-kilns production & usage
MADE 1 stimulated improved smoking kilns production, marketing and usage. The programme promoted the sale of improved smoking technology by fabricators to smokers and fisher-folks in a bid to reduce post-harvest losses of wet fish.

MADE II’s interventions focused on promoting linkages and partnerships between ASPs and other strategic market actors- major domestic fish feed manufacturers, off takers, etc. while also commercialising improved smoking technologies into the creek and riverine communities. 

ESIP (Edo State Investment Portfolio) component

A two year pilot initiative 2018-2020 to test an MSD approach in stimulating opportunities for victims of human trafficking and irregular migration in sectors considered to be aspirational.

Access to market
Agricultural activities in Edo State are significant contributors to the local economy but often lack the support service systems that create a linkage between them and investors or buyers/offtakers to help them benefit from the growing and evolving market opportunities. MADE II worked with multiple partners across the selected markets to develop farming/out-grower models, with groups or clusters of smallholders in Edo and Northern Delta State that offered assurances around guaranteed off-take. The programme also facilitated the adaptation of an innovative model to aggregate produce from hard-to-reach farms/rural markets for direct supply to commercial off-takers.

Apiculture (honey)
The estimated annual volume of honey consumption in Nigeria is just a little over 2,000 tons with nearly 20 per cent of honey products bought that are being imported. This intervention is designed to unlock major constraints limiting the productivity of beekeepers in Edo State such as lack of quality information on beekeeping as a profitable rural enterprise, poor beekeeping practices, the high costs involved with adopting improved beehives and a lack of access to high value markets. MADE II replicated its work with ASPs to create a network of apiculture service providers to train beekeeping clusters in Edo on good apiculture practices and enabling their access to improved beehives, replicated its work with fabricators to build capacity of local beehive makers to manufacture and sell improved and affordable beehives. The programme also facilitated linkages of beekeepers to access innovative crowdfunding models for their businesses as well as offtaker agreements that linked them to high value markets.

Micro-retailing & distribution
In Nigeria the wholesale-retail sector forms a large and growing part of the economy. In Edo State, like other parts of the country, the wholesale and retail sector has consistently been a major employer with small scale businesses dominating. There is high demand for Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCGs) in Edo State, with an estimated monthly consumption of N1.2 billion, but the growth of the market is impeded by low investments in supply chain infrastructure for improved rural distribution and a lack of access to direct supply markets.  Micro-retailers have to engage with numerous middle actors as they struggle to source FMCG products at competitive prices. MADE II worked with lead FMCG firms to strengthen their rural micro-distribution networks that enabled a network of micro-retailers forming themselves into bulk buyer groups to access bulk purchases at competitive prices.

Ruminants feed finishing
Feed finishing (or fattening) of ruminants (sheep and goats for the most part) is a common practice of the rural and peri-urban farmers in Nigeria and requires an intensive feeding regime using static feeding practices that gets them ready for markets in 45 days. 

MADE II facilitated a new knowledge-service driven business model which aligned appropriate incentives to relevant stakeholders and institutions - Animal Care as a feed company, para-vets from the Ministry of Agriculture/Agricultural Development Programme, and small ruminant farmers with an interest to feed finish their goats/sheep to deliver improved feed finishing techniques. Specifically, the intervention supported the development of a business model to address the lack of access to markets (both input and output), knowledge and skills on improved techniques in small ruminant production among smallholder farmers and vulnerable households.

Skills development
The Nigerian informal sector is a significant provider of goods and services for both low and high income groups. The Edo State government has taken steps to address the high rate of unemployment and shortage of white-collar jobs by empowering artisans and encouraging vocational and entrepreneurial skills acquisition programmes through initiatives such as EdoJobs and EdoCreate. However, these skills development and training centres have trained beneficiaries but have had limited success in linking them to high-value markets for their products or services, or to jobs in the informal sector. The intervention took a three-pronged approach by supporting private and public sector partners to deliver employability skills training and development to potential victims of human trafficking, facilitate links to product supply value chains and in linking skilled workers to jobs in the informal sector. A major outcome from the engagement with EdoJobs has been their adoption of business planning tools to create sustainability plans for their incubators, which are now sustainable. Private sector led training programmes for skills development are also profitable.

Notable results (systemic change, poverty impact)

Overall for project (MADE I and II)

MADE II accelerated the outreach and outcomes from MADE I by doubling the results in half the time and half the budget.

  • 551,521 smallholder farmers were reached through commercially driven initiatives (direct and indirect), with 389,441 showing increased productivity, of whom 307,722 experienced at least 15 per cent increase in incomes over their baseline situation, with a net attributable income of £46 million (£18 million from Phase I)
  • 36 lead firms across five sectors have changed their approaches to engaging with smallholder farmers (SHF), working through 1,982 extension service providers investing in select value chains across cassava, agricultural inputs, fisheries, poultry and palm oil:

- Seven crop protection companies increased their sales of inputs by £9 million per annum. CPP sponsored trainings helped 106,000 SHF (46 per cent women) to increase their incomes, with NAIC of £15,790,000

- In cassava, 1,043 village stem entrepreneurs have assisted 141,000 SHF to adopt new practices and record increased incomes with NAIC of £19,766,000

- In poultry, three VPCs greatly expanded their market reach, adding more than 37,000 regular clients for their services, who have benefited with increased NAIC of £2,800,000

  • The markets for the fabrication and sale of small-scale palm oil processing equipment and for smoking kilns are now well established and sales are growing year on year (post project support).
  • Creation of a market for commercially driven extension provision. More than 50 private training companies have changed their training and service delivery approaches from targeting donors and government to targeting SHF as prime clients. Service providers are naturally moving into new sectors, applying the same skills to new product markets. They are now selling an ever-widening basket of services to more than 100,000 SHF (as of February 28, 2020).
  • Nine lead firms invested £8,546,000 in aspirational sectors targeting returnees, potential victims of human trafficking and vulnerable households in Edo State, Nigeria, reaching 33,000 target beneficiaries.
  • Influenced 24 additional investors and 20 development agencies to change their approach of engaging the poor by adopting market systems approaches. Ten NGOs are now providing cofacilitation services as part of their core offering; they are submitting proposals and getting funded to deliver MSD based projects on their own.

[uploaded April 2020]
This programme ended in February 2020