Ellen Carey Maginnis

Seasoned consultant with on-the-ground experience in more than ten countries working with investors, donors, governments and businesses to scale the role of the private sector in addressing global social and environmental challenges. Currently focused on creating impact assessment frameworks that help businesses and investors to measure, manage and increase their positive social and environmental impact.

Putting modern agricultural tools in the hands of smallholder farmers

South Asia
Sub-Saharan Africa
27. Oct 2016

Agriculture contributes 26 per cent of Uganda’s GDP and over 80 per cent of the population is involved in agricultural activities. More than 90 per cent of the power used in farming, however, comes from oxen or humans with rudimentary tools. This creates a huge opportunity to improve the efficiency, quality and production capacity of smallholder farmers through the use of mechanized agricultural equipment.

Connect to Grow has been working with Margaret Naggujja, Executive Director of Mukusu Motors & Properties, to pilot a partnership with an Indian mini-tractor company in an attempt to improve agricultural efficiency and output.

Mukusu is a vehicle and equipment leasing and sales company based in Kampala, established in 2011. Most recently they have begun to specialize and focus on agriculture and farm equipment. Mukusu has identified the need and market potential for modern agricultural equipment at the smallholder farmer level.

Connect to Grow has been working with Margaret to facilitate a pilot partnership with an Indian company that will import, test and popularize small-scale agricultural tractors and implements. The goal of this pilot is to introduce and test mechanized equipment intended to improve the productivity of eastern Ugandan rice-growing smallholder farmers, thereby increasing their incomes.

For this pilot to be a success, Mukusu has become involved in a number of aspects of the agricultural value chain, including engaging with partners that will provide access to farmers, finance and market linkages. “This pilot project has required a real multi-stakeholder approach to partnerships, including with the Indian business,” said Margaret. “I really appreciate the support that Connect to Grow has been providing to help facilitate this partnership and I’m really looking forward to getting the pilot project off-the-ground.”

Mukusu is in the process of finalizing their pilot partnership grant application and hopes to launch their pilot with farmers in November. We look forward to following Mukusu’s journey and providing you with an update as they progress with Connect.

If you are an enterprise in either India, South Asia or Africa and think your business could benefit from a partnership facilitated by the Connect to Grow programme, find out more about how to join for free at Connecttogrow.org (not longer available)