The Ukraine Agricultural Marketing Project (AMP) provided development services, value chain strengthening, association building, market information systems, SME capacity building, and general market development for high-value crops. Implemented by Land O’Lakes International Development and funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the project helped small- and medium-sized fruit and vegetable producers, fruit and vegetable processors, wholesalers and retailers to create strong and enduring commercial linkages. The project emphasized high-value crops, especially vegetables, fruits and berries, to meet the rapidly-growing demands of the domestic market with the sufficient quality and quantity of fresh produce they sought.
The approach supported farmers through the introduction of modern production technologies and practices; more effective and efficient input supply services; improved cleaning, sorting and packaging standards; as well as increased access to available inputs, credit, contracting arrangements and legal support. The project worked through four key components of the market chain, including:
- Commercial Farming: technical training, demonstration plots, farming as a business modeling
- Market Development: technical assistance and training in supply chain management, product marketing and merchandising, post-harvest handling, and export market development
- Producer Associations/Organizations: organizational development and strengthening for farmer groups, producer groups, associations and cooperatives
- Development of Market Information System (MIS): management information system (MIS) to support enhanced decision-making regarding marketing needs
AMP achieved impressive results, including over $14.7 million in produce sales directly facilitated by AMP and $29 million in additional sales (from revenue gains and cost savings). In addition, 4,745 seasonal and 1,096 permanent jobs were created on client farms, with an estimated value of $4.72 million. Five years after the project closed, the Market Information System that the project founded, www.fruit-inform.com, has become the leading market information service for fresh produce in the former Soviet Union. It still attracts more than 30,000 users monthly