The opportunity for smallholder financing is enormous. Fewer than 10 percent of the nearly half billion of the world’s smallholder farmers operate in organized farmer groups that have benefited from agriculture financial services initiatives. Even for those farmer organizations that receive financial services, funding has typically been short-term working capital for purchasing outputs as opposed to financing that would enable farmers to invest in their businesses.
Grameen Foundation hosted a roundtable of experts in agricultural and financial services in September 2015 to discuss new models for reaching smallholder farmers successfully and sustainably. This brief summarizes the challenges, possibilities, and outstanding issues that still need to be addressed.