Microfund

Community-based food processing for healthier, more prosperous families.

Microfund is a community-based ecosystem that enables food sharing, exchange & trade among families for food, nutrition & income security

Use Case

Jen's family owns a 1-acre plot that they farm for all their food and household income. They are able to grow only a small number of different crops, which very often don't fulfill their nutritional needs. Microfund receives some of their produce, processes it into nutritional products and returns these to the family to supplement their existing diet. Whenever the family harvests more than they need, we buy the surplus produce at competitive rates. By receiving different types of foods from many families, Microfund acts as a nutrient redistribution and balancing platform, enabling poor families to access food and nutrients they would otherwise never access if they consumed foods from their own farms alone, thereby ensuring proper nutrition, food and income insecurity.

Potential

Statistics show that incidence of malnutrition in developing countries is highest among smallholder families. Because of the small parcels of land they depend on entirely, these families rarely produce the full variety of crops they need for a balanced diet or surplus produce for sale in order to purchase what they don't produce, leading to chronic malnutrition and abject poverty. Microfund is a highly scalable social enterprise that tackles this problem using community-based low-cost food processing technologies utilizing only what smallholder families already own and produce. Our food reception and redistribution platform ensures that families with small parcels of land or those with land under monoculture have a balanced diet for a healthier, smarter, more prosperous generation.

Business Case

We are an agro-processing and food exchange platform that receives produce from smallholder farmers in exchange for value-added food products and/or unprocessed food of a different kind. We charge a service fee in form of a small fraction of the produce received, thereby generating an overall surplus of raw foods that is processed into value-added products sold to the general public. Thus, for farmers in our target communities, we exchange raw produce for value-added, fortified products at a small mark up, and buy surplus produce at market rates. For the general public, we are a food processing outfit producing nutritious products that support community nutrition ecosystems. By buying our products, the public not only gets competitively-priced products, they are also doing social good.

Objectives:

  1. To ensure that families in smallholder farming communities can access at least 80% of the nutrients necessary for a balanced diet.
  2. To reduce food wastage by establishing a food exchange platform, and by purchasing surplus produce at competitive prices.
  3. To ensure household income security for rural smallholder families by buying surplus food generated by our target communities.

Team MicroFund

Kampala, Uganda

  • Business / Social Enterprise
  • Economics / Development
  • Global

Our Team

Team Microfund Design Statement / Published November 17, 2014 by Siraj Sebanakitta

Team Microfund Design Statement

Microfund is a community-based ecosystem that enables food sharing, exchange & trade among rural and urban-poor families engaged in smallholder agriculture in order to reduce food wastage as well as ensure families receive the full complement of nutirents needed for proper growth, thus ensuring food, nutrition & income security

Interesting Fact about Rural-facing Microlending for Food Processing / Published November 17, 2014 by Siraj Sebanakitta

Interesting Fact about Rural-facing Microlending for Food Processing

Studies show that:

1. More and more people are engaging in their local food system by becoming food producers themselves (e.g., by gardening or raising animals such as chickens), or by choosing to purchase more local foods.

2. In addition to growing food locally, processing these foods into value-added products and then promoting these products are important steps towards a stronger food system.

3. :( Unfortunately, in many developing countries, despite adequate food production in most communities, malnutrition and undernutrition rates among children are usually above 60%! Malnutrition, although an independent :) condition on its own, is a precursor to a host of diseases that are some times fatal.

http://livewellcolorado.org/healthy-policy/food-systems-toolbox/community-food-production-processing-and-marketing#sthash.5pRmyM2Q.dpuf

Team Workspace - Our share of the wall. / Published November 17, 2014 by Angella Kyomugisha

Team Workspace - Our share of the wall.

https://www.facebook.com/TFFMicrofund

Why do these stickys keep falling off our wall? Can you recommend a brand that can stick to the wall?

Co-working space / Published November 17, 2014 by Angella Kyomugisha

Co-working space

This is the tiny-weeny co-working space that we share with 4 other Ugandan teams. We are finding that running ideas not only amongst ourselves, but also with teams working on totally different ball games is very helpful. #TFFCrossIdeation

Here, we were attending a DL coaching event.

On- Campus Team Workspace / Published November 17, 2014 by Angella Kyomugisha

On- Campus Team Workspace

https://www.facebook.com/TFFMicrofund

@AgMicrofund team space and snackup scenarios. We have strange fellows on our blog. Hack or systemFail? @tffchallenge

Our Mission

We aim to ensure that families in smallholder farming communities can access at least 80% of the nutrients necessary for a balanced diet recommended by the World Health Organization.

Our Background

We are a mixture of Ag economics, environment and statistics passionate about food processing, sharing and trade for better food, nutrition and income security.

Team Microfund Design Statement / Published November 17, 2014 by Siraj Sebanakitta

Team Microfund Design Statement

Microfund is a community-based ecosystem that enables food sharing, exchange & trade among rural and urban-poor families engaged in smallholder agriculture in order to reduce food wastage as well as ensure families receive the full complement of nutirents needed for proper growth, thus ensuring food, nutrition & income security

Interesting Fact about Rural-facing Microlending for Food Processing / Published November 17, 2014 by Siraj Sebanakitta

Interesting Fact about Rural-facing Microlending for Food Processing

Studies show that:

1. More and more people are engaging in their local food system by becoming food producers themselves (e.g., by gardening or raising animals such as chickens), or by choosing to purchase more local foods.

2. In addition to growing food locally, processing these foods into value-added products and then promoting these products are important steps towards a stronger food system.

3. :( Unfortunately, in many developing countries, despite adequate food production in most communities, malnutrition and undernutrition rates among children are usually above 60%! Malnutrition, although an independent :) condition on its own, is a precursor to a host of diseases that are some times fatal.

http://livewellcolorado.org/healthy-policy/food-systems-toolbox/community-food-production-processing-and-marketing#sthash.5pRmyM2Q.dpuf

Team Workspace - Our share of the wall. / Published November 17, 2014 by Angella Kyomugisha

Team Workspace - Our share of the wall.

https://www.facebook.com/TFFMicrofund

Why do these stickys keep falling off our wall? Can you recommend a brand that can stick to the wall?

Co-working space / Published November 17, 2014 by Angella Kyomugisha

Co-working space

This is the tiny-weeny co-working space that we share with 4 other Ugandan teams. We are finding that running ideas not only amongst ourselves, but also with teams working on totally different ball games is very helpful. #TFFCrossIdeation

Here, we were attending a DL coaching event.

On- Campus Team Workspace / Published November 17, 2014 by Angella Kyomugisha

On- Campus Team Workspace

https://www.facebook.com/TFFMicrofund

@AgMicrofund team space and snackup scenarios. We have strange fellows on our blog. Hack or systemFail? @tffchallenge

Our Team

Our Mission

We aim to ensure that families in smallholder farming communities can access at least 80% of the nutrients necessary for a balanced diet recommended by the World Health ...Read More

Our Background

We are a mixture of Ag economics, environment and statistics passionate about food processing, sharing and trade for better food, nutrition and income security.Read More

The information contained here represents student project ideas developed as the result of brainstorming activities during Round 1 of the TFF Challenge. It does not represent any final business plans or commercial products.