Sesame is a tiny, oil-rich edible seed with great nutritional benefits and commercial potential for farmers. When produced in sizable volumes, access to the market from premium processing industries is possible. However, insufficiencies in production, post-harvest handling, and erratic changes in climate, discourage impactful investment for the sector.

Nyekorac Farmers’ Cooperative Society Ltd, a CRAFT Business champion, is not letting this challenge deter its community from progressing. The company is tirelessly enabling its farmers to adopt climate-smart sustainable production methods for Sesame and linking them to sustainable markets.

Nyekorac is also establishing demonstration plots, where farmers will receive training on climate-smart agricultural practices. Such skills will increase productivity and make producers more resilient to climate shocks.

Furthermore, with a 40% post-harvest loss rate in sesame, Nyekorac deems it necessary to train smallholder farmers in post-harvest handling best practices. In addition, the company is providing drying tools and materials such as tarpaulins and hermetic storage facilities (Plastic and Metallic storage containers). These will maintain the quality of sesame grain that the market demands.

Through its partnership with National Semi-Arid Resources Research Institute (NaSARRI), NaSARRI sesame seed breeders, the cooperative is training selected lead farmers as seed multipliers. This strategy will ensure farmers have sufficient seed input for planting.

Key Interventions

  • Enhance the capacity of 3,100 smallholder farmers to improve sesame output by 15% through climate-smart agronomy, linkages to input suppliers, and mechanized farming by 2022.
  • Improve resilience to climate Change amongst targeted farmers through the promotion of appropriate climate-smart agricultural practices.
  • Improve efficiency in soybean inputs delivery, agronomy, and markets access.
  • Improve business turnover by at least 10% through developing new market channels and increasing volumes of soybean marketed.

About the Business Champion

Nyekorac is a youth-led and member-owned farmer organization registered with the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Cooperatives. The company has four full-time staff that occupy a multiplicity of roles to support its growth. Then its membership of 3,000 farmers is grouped into a 30-member Rural Producer organization (RPOs) for production efficiency.

Although Nyekorac produces other crops such as soybean, common beans, maize, and cassava, its highest revenue is from sesame. In meeting the required demands of the crop, the company trains farmers, offers storage and identifies markets for sesame, not only in the districts of Lira, Alebtong, and Oyam, but the entire Lango sub-region.