Avo Agro is based in Akwa Ibom, a state in the heart of what is known as the palm oil belt. Palm trees are in abundance and yet despite the fact that this commodity has positively transformed the economies of countries like Indonesia and Malaysia, the palm oil farmers in Akwa Ibom are desperately poor. Inspired by these sobering facts, we decided to jump head first into being part of the solution.
We travelled the state talking meeting with leaders and farmers, before finally settling on land in Ibiono Ibom local government area.
We have connected with a number of development agencies, including the Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta PIND, Market Development for the Niger Delta MADE Niger Delta, and SHERDA. These partners have been working closely with Avo Agro in conducting trainings for smallholders in Ibiono Ibom, providing them with knowledge and access to information on improving farming practices, harvesting techniques and cultivating quality seedlings.
Avo Agro is simultaneously seeking profits and improvement in the prospects for small-holders through education and training. In the long-term, we will seek RSPO certification for our small-holder suppliers and our soon to be constructed mill and otherwise observe best sustainable practice including gender equality.