Unlocking finance for smallholder forest and farm producers

18 - 20 Apr 2023, World Agroforestry Campus, Nairobi, Kenya

Lessons and practices for landscape restoration and sustainable production in Africa


Africa has an estimated thirty-three million smallholder farmers. They contribute up to 70 per cent of the food supply and the actual implementation of most regional and international level climate agreements that their respective countries have signed. Smallholders are key to the achievement of goals of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and the Decade on Family Farming.

Despite this, smallholders are confronted by many challenges, key among the limited access to finance. Finance provided to smallholder producers in low-income countries, particularly in Africa, rarely match their requirements to improve and scale up sustainable forest and farm management practices. Smallholders are often constrained by unfavourable scale, terms and conditions associated with the few finance opportunities available to them with many risk factors, regardless of their capacity. Therefore, they fail to tap into substantial returns that can be found through better-suited financial products for forest and farm producers.


This conference will provide a platform for the exchange of valuable lessons and sharing perspectives on related projects on finance. This will help develop a shared understanding of challenges in getting finance to smallholder producers for their innovative and value chain activities, and actions for climate and nature-based solutions.

Specifically, the conference will:

  • Stocktake lessons learned from successful and scalable experiences and best practices on finance;
  • Share insights on the best ways to mobilize finance; and
  • Discuss and identify appropriate financing instruments for scaling up, including carbon and biodiversity finance and internal finance mechanisms developed by smallholder producer organizations.

The conference will also include a field trip to smallholder cooperatives in Kiambu and Muranga counties of Kenya. Participants will see examples of forest and farm producer organizations’ innovative activities, value chains development and climate and nature actions worth financing, as well as their internal finance mechanisms.

This conference is organized by the Forest and Farm Facility, in collaboration with CIFOR-ICRAF, Kenya Forest Research Institute, and the Kenya Forest Service.