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The U.S. government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and Chipsy for Food Industries, a PepsiCo Egypt company, renewed a partnership that boosts the productivity of farmers and builds a more transparent and sustainable potato supply chain. U.S. Ambassador Jonathan Cohen, PepsiCo Egypt CEO Mohamed Shelbaya, USAID Mission Director Leslie Reed, and PepsiCo Regional Manager for Sustainable Agriculture Reuben Blackie participated.
The partnership empowers Egyptian smallholder farmers to establish reliable market linkages, increase crop quality and yields, and progress toward internationally recognized standards for sustainable agriculture. During the first year of the partnership, farmers received training and technical recommendations on good agricultural practices, such as targeted use of irrigation and fertilizer. As a result, in the 2019/2020 growing season, hundreds of farmers in Beni Suef significantly increased quality and yield and cut costs, tripling profits.
U.S. Ambassador Jonathan Cohen noted: “This partnership is helping farmers to increase their incomes and improve the well-being of their families.”
Over the next two years, USAID and Chipsy for Food Industries will expand activities to farmers in the Menoufia and Minya governorates and plan to reach 2,500 farmers by 2023. Ultimately, Chipsy plans to use this model throughout its entire smallholder supply chain in Egypt. PepsiCo Egypt also positively impacts Egypt’s farming communities through initiatives such as its locally grown seeds program, which enables the company to produce 100% locally sourced potato chips.
Mohamed Shelbaya, CEO of PepsiCo Egypt said: “For 70 years, developing the agricultural sector has been, and will continue to be one of our top priorities. We have been working closely with the smallholder farmers who are the cornerstone of our agriculture business to develop their capabilities to meet global standards of quality and productivity. Today, we are honored to renew our cooperation with USAID to improve the livelihoods of the smallholder Egyptian farmers by providing them with the technical know-how and the sustainable agriculture practices, to include these farmers in Chipsy’s supply chain.”
This partnership is part of the U.S. government’s ongoing support to Egypt’s agricultural sector, which is helping farmers in Upper Egypt become more self-reliant by establishing connections to domestic and international markets, gaining access to finance, and increasing adherence to food and safety practices.
Since 1978, the American people have invested over $30 billion to further support Egypt’s economic development. To find out more about USAID’s work in Egypt, please see https://www.usaid.gov/egypt, and follow @USAIDEgypt on Facebook and Twitter.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of U.S. Embassy – Cairo, Egypt.