YAP proposal #237: Feed the farm, feed the world! (Ogholi Kelvin, Nigeria)

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Whenever I visit a friend at home here in Nigeria and he offers me protein food like chicken for lunch, this tells me he is doing well. Because, growing up, we only get to eat chicken whenever there is an occasion like Christmas, marriage, birthday ceremony, etc.

Was it like that for you too?

Animal protein like chicken has remained a luxury for low-income consumers who live on less than USD 2.00 a day. Because, it is expensive, but this is only a symbol of the bigger challenge.

Protein foods like livestock, poultry, and aquaculture are expensive because rearing and growing them costs farmers a lot of money. And 70% of farmers’ expenses go to buying feed—not fair.

This concern, according to Food and Agriculture Organization, is caused by ‘overdependence on corn, which has directly led to the high cost of poultry and livestock feed, and this challenge is the biggest problem crippling the Livestock industry in Nigeria and depleting the livelihood of over 2,000,000 farmers in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa’.

This ‘feed gap impoverishes farmers and makes livestock and poultry-rearing unfairly expensive, putting smallholder farmers and millions of families, especially in rural communities, at risk of poverty and malnutrition (protein energy malnutrition)—the single biggest contributor to child mortality.

However, June 2007 was a great day for my family and we were super excited. It was harvest day and my Dad was going to harvest and sell the fishes he had been growing for the previous four months. The buyers came, they loved the product, but underpriced it and my Dad refused to sell.

Two days later he sold but he sold at a loss. It was so disappointing and that was the moment I promised to put a smile on his face. But not just on his face but also on the faces of over 500,000 smallholder farmers like him.

Two years ago my co-founder (Mene Blessing) and I started working on how we could help struggling farmers in our community make more money and spend less on buying expensive animal feed, which is their biggest challenge.

We came up with a solution—the first of its kind globally—called: UNFIRE (Unorthodox Feed Innovation for Rural Entreprising Smallholder Farmers).

This is a product that is non–cereal, non–ethanol base, which provides farmers in Nigeria with access to sustainable, low-cost animal feed, that is 20-30% less expensive than conventional feeds (corn).

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UNFIRE feed is made from agricultural and environmental waste (fruit waste is in abundance—like mango seed kernels, seaweed, etc.), which are scientifically proven and innovatively tested.

This model also helps to create job opportunities for rural women and engages more youth in agriculture for the collection of these wastes. UNFIRE is fair trade. UNFIRE is a highly nutritious feed blend resulting in higher profits for farmers and helping to increase their income by 60%, while also increasing availability of protein rich foods like chicken, eggs, and fish in rural communities.

We measure success through the following ways:

Indirect access:

  • Increase in farmers’ income
  • Amount of money saved by the farmer from buying UNFIRE feeds.

Quantitative Impact (direct access):

Amount of feed sold

  • Amount of poultry/livestock produced
  • Amount of waste (agricultural and environmental) recovered
  • Number of consumers served
  • Number of rural youth engaged/employed in agriculture

Qualitative Impact:

  • Positive impact on consumers’ health due to increased consumption from lower prices of eggs and chickens—effective protein

Use of Grant for 2016–17

  • Research and development of new feed formula from available waste for farmers (UNFIRE Lab), USD 1,500.
  • Agricultural and environmental waste (feed input) collection by local youth and women, production and logistics (fair trade) USD 2,500.
  • Operations USD 1,000.

 

Blogpost and picture submitted by Ogholi Kelvin (Nigeria): kelvinogholi[at]gmail.com

The content, structure and grammar are at the discretion of the author only.

 

This post is published as proposal #237 of “YAP” – our “Youth Agripreneur Project”.

The first selection of the winners will be based on the number of comments, likes and views each proposal gets.

As a reader, you can support this speaker’s entry:

  • Leave a comment (question, suggestion,..) on this project in the comment field at the bottom of this page
  • Support the post by clicking the “Like” button below (only possible for those with a com account)
  • Spread this post via your social media channels, using the hashtag: #GCARD3

 

Have a look at the other “YAP” proposals too!


As a donor, support young agripreneurs and sponsor this unique project.

Check out the side column for our current sponsors.
“YAP” is part of the #GCARD3 process, the third Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development.


184 thoughts on “YAP proposal #237: Feed the farm, feed the world! (Ogholi Kelvin, Nigeria)

  1. Kelvin. Good job!!!! I am so glad you went through with the application. As always, your passion for Agribusiness is infectious. Keep soaring and making impact. AFRICA NEEDS MORE PEOPLE LIKE YOU.

    1. Thank you Femi…. Our team is working round the clock to make sure farmers make more Money from farming.

    1. Thank you Mr Asuquo, learning from you @the SIP workshop still keeps me going and its my hope others in this same space are doing incredible job too.

      Proudly LEAP African SIP…

  2. Highly innovative way of getting livestock feed other than the popularly known corn feed! Indeed this will Mk farmers spend less and save more! Making more profit. Nothing is a waste!

  3. its a great innovation for me….and I don’t have to eat chicken on ceremonial Base’s. go Mr Kelvin Ogholi

  4. Nice piece of write up, and an inspiring story to help motivate upcoming agriprenuers.
    Kudos to UNFIRE!, as you keep the fire burning.

    1. Thank you Ferdinand, how do we got more upcoming agripreneurs within your network to see this and be motivated?

  5. Awesome work. Bravo! Can’t wait to join you up in the field of agriculture… feeling great as an agricultural student… Thanks for building me up again!

  6. I really do wish you have all the help you need to expand this incredible work you are doing. You are making a difference and changing the face of agriculture in Africa

  7. I call this innovation in the agricultural sector. This is just the beginning.. take charge of the world. Lovely work guys.

    1. Thank you Nkechi

      Firstly my co-founder and I are committed to help cut down the cost of feeds for small holder farmers through our waste to wealth model in any location were there are abundance of agricultural/environmental waste that can be technologically transformed into low-cost sustainable feeds however, we are still building formidable structures here in Nigeria but hope to expand our technology in the nearest future to countries like Ghana, Uganda etc.. where we are already getting invitations from.

  8. Well done Kelvin !!!
    This is certainly apt for the times that we live in. I haven’t known you much but with what you have put forward; i have no doubt in the fact that a grant like this in your hand would certainly make this project a reality.
    The world surely needs more of this.
    great job…Don’t stop here!!!

    1. Thank you Jonathan.

      Please share within your network to encourage more young people especially those in the agricultural space.

  9. Simply phenomenal… an idea whose time has come to cater for the basic concerns of farmers and end users.
    Nothing short of my full support brother.

    1. Thank you Paul – rightly said!

      Please share link with your network to encourage more young people especially those in the agricultural space not just to read and be inspired but also share their thought.

    1. Thank you Paul

      nothing is a waste anymore – we just have to find a way of transforming them into something useful.

  10. With people like you Kelvin the future of Africa is indeed bright and beautiful, may God continue to bless you and your team. I can see #UNFIRE becoming a household name in #Africa and #Worldwide.

  11. I think this is Awesome, and I appreciate the fact that people like you are considering local options for feed production, as I know how expensive it can be. Thank you for your commitment to improving the livelihood of millions of Nigerians and our Agricultural sector. Wishing you all the best, and would be interested in buying your feeds also: )

  12. Excellent kelvin. You’ve just proven to the world that we can always make use of the little things around us that we count as waste to become the big resources that will improve our way of life. The write up is expository.

  13. Hmmm, a way to help farmers maximise profit, consumers to meet up with daily allowable intake which most don’t attain. Kudos to you Kelvin.

  14. This is a brilliant venture! People like you are rare, and deserve all the support you can get. I strongly believe in this idea, agriculture is key to our development. Well done!!

  15. Great Job by UnFIRE! I’m impressed by the number of farmers that have been helped by your enterprise and the measurable impact made so far. I’d love to know what your expansion plans to other African countries are?

  16. Great innovation am sure this is what nigerians need ,this idea is really a wonderfull one for we the african . Cos I know with this the livelihood of nigerians will increase God bless you …….

  17. I do have some concerns though. I see this brilliant idea going all 13 yards but how would you manage the constraints of logistics, storage, handling and in fact the entire value chain of to business.. . Considering that many of these are outside your immediate control

  18. Great work, so glad you had the courage to start! Others are learning and am sure gradually provision will come, since vision has been initiated.

  19. This is a fantastic innovation that shows foresight and a passion to alleviate agricultural standards in our continent. Farmers and agricultural produce consumers in Africa should be ever grateful to you for this.

  20. WINNERS are those who at some point had to trade in their victim’s mentality for a survivor’s resiliency. They had to choose not to quit.

    Refuse to be anybody’s victim. Yes, it happened to you, but its not the END of you!!

    1. Think you Joni

      Yes, more farmers need to see this. Are there Farmer’s within your network perhaps we could work on getting this across to them. Please what are your thought ?

  21. It is reality, animal proteins are too essential in our everyday diets to be out of our financial reach. You might not be aware of the true profundity of the impact UNFIRE shall make, but I can assure you that it will save a lot of lives. That fact alone should earn you all agricultural grants that exist for young agriculturists in Africa.

  22. Go UNFIRE ,don’t stop cause am sure our agricultural student in school with same mind set will be very happy about this innovation ….and this will hasten them to do something great ,BRAVO…………………..

  23. Fantastic idea now my question is how do you go about creating awareness and distribution which I feel is very key…

  24. Kelvin, please provide some light on how you plan to extend this market to other regions across the country

  25. This is a very good initiative that can boost agricultural development and create jobs. Agriculture is the foundation and bedrock upon which the development of table human community has depended on throughout the whole universe such as rural and urban communities. history of economics provides
    us with ample evidence that agricultural revolution is a fundamental pre-condition for economic development. the agricultural sector has the potentials to be the Industrial and economic springboard from which a country’s development can take off. Indeed, more often ….so I guess with this innovation nigeria is goin some where …go UNFIRE

    1. Thank you Joseph

      Yes Agriculture is the foundation and
      bedrock upon which the
      development of table human
      community has depended on
      throughout the whole universe
      such as rural and urban
      communities.

      Please what are your thought on how we can get young people involve in the Nigeria agricultural space?

  26. This is an incredible opportunity for young aspiring farmers who would love to go into poultry animal rearing… With this UNFIRE farming would be easy

    1. Yes Michael

      One of our goal is to motivate young people to go into agriculture through our success story, project and education.

      please help us spread the word through your network and let’s get as much young people we can.

  27. According to UNFIRE, this will develop a set of services and innovation that will serve as youth training tools and help increase sustainable productivity and incomes of agricultural producers.keep it up ……………..

    1. Thank you Joseph

      You are right – beyond just helping to increase the income of farmers, we also want to involve young people in the educational process.

  28. #fearnot. D Lord DAT started with u will surely see u to d end. out of nothing came something useful. Great work highly innovative. Kelvin d Trailblazer.

  29. Your proposal is a motivation to this generation. I do hope that you get the funding you need to float this and reach the whole of Africa…
    UNFIRE is indeed a thought outside the box….
    Thank you Kelvin for doing this for Nigeria… Reach out to the whole of Africa.

    #iRepGPI🌍

  30. Thank you Raquel…
    As always – you gave the extra push and my desire is for more young people to embrace agriculture.

  31. How can one not be impressed by your work? This is food production we are talking about here. I really hope that thousands like you spring up soon and revolutionize the Agricultural sector of Africa. So we would have cheaper, bountiful food markets and even the low-income earners will feed well.

    1. Thank you Temitope

      We are doing the work of our Father on earth and it is our hope young people get inspired by our story to take action.

  32. This is a very bright innovation. I feel delirious just by envisioning the possible impacts that your project will make. I really, really hope you win his grant. But, regardless of whatever the outcome of this venture is, keep on pushing it. “Feed your inner FIRE with DESIRE and it will NEVER wane”

  33. Yes Andrew there is to be done in the agricultural space… encourage others in your cycle with this post.

  34. Thank you Chinenye Ezeakor

    So much more can be done and achieved when we pay details to local options, it makes farming something exciting for farmers to do.

  35. Kelvin you are Indeed a big blessing to this generation, l believe in God that you will soar high and is my prayer that God will help you to accomplished this dream by representing Nigeria world wide. God bless you Kelvin! God bless Nigeria!!

  36. Am I the only one that noticed how sweet, tasty, healthy and beneficial organic chicken are? For more than a year now my family and I always get our chicken from the villagers that raises the local breads (my brother do call it the original chicken).

    Thanks to an innovation like this that will make it possible for us to have more of organic children protein in our meals.

    But if I may ask: Which one do you prefer? Organic or Hybrid Chicken?

    1. No Fasola I don’t think you are the only one that have noticed how sweet, tasty, healthy and beneficial organic chicken is because I have too – growing up, we ate more of organic chicken with strong bones.

      You have more of Hybrid chickens now in the market but we are working on reversing that trend soon.

  37. Well done Kelvin. I learned of your work from my mentor Johnson Abbaly and I’ve been thrilled reading this post

  38. Wow …………..A new research centre that will help African countries promote innovation in the agricultural sector to combat rural poverty and hunger has been inaugurated.

  39. this is exclusively unprecedented. it creates an avenue for reducing the increasing financial stress that the traditional purchase and utilization of corn has created. more so, considering It’s incredible potency, I strongly suggest that an upgrade for It’s present concentration for smallholder farmers to higher targets such as industries, etc soon. I Can’t but marvel at such innovation

  40. with the right support and sufficient funds
    I believe this could generate more food for Nigeria/africa

  41. Am happy when I see Young Nigerians making a difference in spite of the difficulties we face. Congrats Kelvin.

  42. This is a great incentive for small scale farmers to be able to afford good feed..for animal production

  43. Whenever I visit a friend at home here in Nigeria and he offers me protein food like chicken for lunch, this tells me he is doing well. Because, growing up, we only get to eat chicken whenever there is an occasion like Christmas, marriage, birthday ceremony, etc.” touching story. let’s support our very own.

  44. Our agricultural sector needs innovative ideas such as this. If the agricultural sector thrives that will boast our economy big time! Good work

  45. Thank u kelvin……… There is hope for Nigerians progressing……… Great mind….. Thumbs up

  46. You are a rare gem, keep the flag flying and the sky will be your starting point. More grease to your elbows. I support your vision.

  47. Thank you Temitope

    Following up with the question, there are already established feeds distributors all over the region whose job is to buy from manufactures and sell to retailers and farmers so once a distributor gets in contact with us or we reach them, business is initiated however we are till working on getting feeds to the west region but you are more than welcome to discuss further on it.

  48. Thank you Joseph

    Yes the livelihood of Nigerians will definitely increase when we create an environment that permits that. please help us share and spread the word within your network.

  49. Thank you Eweama

    So we have already been able to identify most of our key channels for distribution and marketing and these include already established feeds distributors whom are in contact with these farmers on daily basis also we see farmers who already use our feeds as an effective tool as well because they have testimonies. Apart from these we also visit farms to pitch our feeds.

    Please share your thoughts with us.

    1. Hi Temitope

      Waste materials like the seaweed, MSK etc.. are use as raw material inputs for UNFIRE feeds however the process is proprietary to UNFIRE but will be happy to discuss further on it.

    1. @Adeola, that’s one of our goal – spreading the news.
      Do you have or know any farmer within your network who could benefit from this? please let us know .

  50. Good one bro, this is what we all need especially we Africans, agriculture is we n we are agricultue, let’s join hands to feed ourselves n d nation as a whole. Bravo bro

  51. I’m really impressed Kelvin, keep up the good work. Hopefully, the nation will get to appreciate young talents like yours. I do hope you get selected.

  52. Great job Kelvin. This is a laudable project and I really hope it is given room to expand and impact as many lives as possible and I also hope it serves as a source of encouragement to other young individuals to have an entrepreneurial mindset.

  53. kelvin i am so proud of you bro, keep the fire burning, i am so impressed, that piece is so expository,

  54. Kelvin is prolific social entreprenuer who is passionate helping farmers reduce cost of feeds using rich,alternative and unorthodox feeds.
    Thanks for helping Nigeria farmers feed Nigeria.
    Goodluck Kelvin

  55. great initiative, really innovative and of course only sound mind minds reason like this. creativity as of time passed was lack by Africans in general but this is a must support thinking! thumbs up

  56. Thanks to UNFIRE my dad doesn’t have to spend so much to maintain his fish farm. he has thought about the loss these other feeds has caused him. keep up the good
    work.

  57. A wonderful initiative by UNFIRE . Keep the Flame aglow brother! Africa surely backs you up. This is crazily innovative and the kind of disruptive solutions we need to solve challenges in Africa!

  58. Awesome work @Kelvin Ogholi and UNFIRE. It’s a honor serving at UNFIRE and we are working hard and smart towards changing the game of livestock farming and feeds production in Nigeria and beyond.

  59. Great innovation and it will help Africa start feeding their subjects and even have more to export . makes cost of food affordable. But I advice for more awareness and education for farmers at rural areas. Most of them are not on social media

  60. Great innovation. Please let there be more awareness for rural farmers who probably are not on social media.

  61. Great work Kelvin, this generation is blessed having you. The Lord will see you through. Go!!!! Kelvin

  62. Great work Kevin I know with the likes of you Nigeria will definitely has hope for tomorrow. Keep up the good work dear. The good Lord is your strength. Your efforts will never be in vain.

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