(September 9, 2015)
Welcomed by the chief of Gandiaye Municipality, Deputy Under Secretary for the USDA’s Foreign Agriculture Service Alexis Taylor and USDA Senegal staff visited an NCBA CLUSA Senegalese millet processing plant in late August, noting the first time a foreign authority has visited the site.
Part of a tour visiting USDA funded field projects, the visit to the millet processing plant in in Gandiaye, Senegal included speeches by dignitaries, a tour of the production process, and a drum session led by the son of Yande Codou Séne, a local cultural legend.
The millet processing plant is run by 15 women in Gandiaye, who established the plant in 2012 as part of USDA and NCBA CLUSA’s first millet value chain project in Senegal (MVCP). The Gandiaye plant women were part of the 9,000 farmers and producers trained in millet production and marketing services from 2009 – 2013.
NCBA CLUSA’s current USDA millet business services project (MBSP) builds on that initial project by focusing on developing processing systems, improving production quality, post-harvest handling, and expanding millet trade through public-private partnerships. This second phase millet project is expected to sell over 1,400 tons of millet on the market and improve millet production for over 42,000 hectares of land.
With $9.6 million in programmatic funds, MBSP almost doubles NCBA CLUSA’s USDA funding for millet value chains in Senegal and will be implemented through 2017.
The guests took a tour of the plant, saw demonstrations of the millet processing circuit and tasted the finished product for sale.