Walmart is committed to improving the livelihoods of small- and medium-sized farmers in growing economies. It supports such farmers through its global sourcing program, providing technical assistance and training programs to increase farmer income. For the period 2011 to end 2016, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation supported training programs for more than 1 million women worldwide including more than half a million women trained on farms. In 2017, Walmart Foundation launched the Market Readiness Program in Andhra Pradesh and WM India Technical & Consulting Services Pvt.Ltd. launched the Sunhara Prayas project in Uttar Pradesh to enhance the value chain of mango, banana and vegetable farmers.

A few of those programs supported in India are:

Market Readiness for Farmers in India (currently underway)

  • Walmart Foundation’s support with a grant of close to US$2 million to Agribusiness Systems International (ASI) to help smallholder farmers in India diversify the markets for their produce.
  • The funding will enable ASI to implement the Farmer Market Readiness Project in India’s Andhra Pradesh State. It will provide farmers with the knowledge, resources and services to enhance their market-readiness and expand their reach.
  • The goal is to improve the livelihoods of 15,000 farmers and their families and communities over the coming two years.
  • The Market Readiness Project will encourage farmers to work together and help them learn new skills to improve their productivity and the quality of their produce. As a key part of the program, ASI will promote closer links between buyers and farmers. Facilitating meetings prior to the planting season will let diverse buyers share their insights into upcoming market demand, standards, and prices and allow farmers to manage planting and crop rotation to maximize profits.

Sustainable Trade Initiative Better Cotton Production (completed)

  • The Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) supports cotton producers in India in adopting Better Cotton Production principles: reducing use of water in cotton production; reducing use and impact of pesticides; improving soil health and biodiversity; promoting fair wages, equality of employment, proper health and safety; and improving profitability by introducing farm management practices that reduce input costs, maximize yield, improve quality and create a market for the 'Better Cotton' product.
  • So far, the program has trained 60,000 farmers, including 4,922 women. The Walmart Foundation provided a grant of $650,000.

Agribusiness Systems International Sunhara Prayas Project (completed)

  • Agribusiness Systems International’s Sunhara Prayas project facilitated increased socio-economic empowerment for 6,000 smallholder farmers – 5,000 of them women – in the vegetable value chain in four districts of Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh in India, through improved and inclusive horticultural production and marketing systems.
  • This two-year program focused on empowering women through female-achieved, on-farm income gains and addressing barriers (market and social) that restrict their ability to access and exercise control over economic opportunities. The Walmart Foundation provided a grant of USD 1M.

TechnoServe Economic Development of Smallholder Vegetable Farmers Project (completed)

  • The TechnoServe project empowered farmers by upgrading farming practices and developing the local logistics connecting farmers to the formal retail sector.
  • During the life of the project, TechnoServe delivered training to 10,043 farmers, 5,025 of whom were female farmers and farm workers. Additionally, the seven TechnoServe clusters successfully connected 296 farmers to the formal retail market.
  • Beyond the farmer training sessions at the Farmer Training and Collection Centers, TechnoServe provided women-specific training and empowered women to participate in income-generating farming activities. The Walmart Foundation provided a USD 670K.

Cashew Value Initiative (completed)

  • The Cashew Value Chain Initiative, conducted in collaboration with CARE India, helped provide sustainable economic opportunity for 1,250 women in two coastal districts of Tamil Nadu.
  • Three processing centers and eight satellite centers were located in villages to reduce commute time and facilitate strong participation. This initiative was designed to provide opportunities for vulnerable women to improve literacy and math skills, while also increasing their income.