CerealsAll West African countries produce maize, millet/sorghum, and rice, and hundreds of millions of small farmers make their living from these crops, making them strategic commodities for regional food security and trade. West Africa offers huge markets and promising marketing opportunities for cereals producers, especially with large institutional buyers.

The Trade Hub coordinates assistance to the cereals sector through the West Africa Grains Network (WAGN); ROPPA, West Africa’s network of farmer organizations; and the NGO Afrique Verte. We are developing an active regional trade network for cereals to stimulate investment, and increase productivity by:

  • Identifying the major constraints to cross-border trade in cereals during periods of food insecurity, and developing action plans to alleviate these constraints.
  • Strengthening the capacity of WAGN to deliver services to its members, while making it more sustainable as a member-driven organization.
  • Training grain producers’ organizations to improve the agricultural productivity of their members.
  • Increasing access to real-time data through a market information system for major cereals, and helping improve the transparency of the system, in partnership with RESIMAO, the region’s agricultural market information network.
  • The Trade Hub produces a monthly West Africa Cereals Market Outlook, which compiles market and price information about cereals in seven countries. It is published in both English and French.

Cereals News

  • Women-owned businesses in Burkina Faso continue to thrive under the Hub’s Access to Finance Strategy

    November 28, 2016
    As part of its Gender Access to Finance Strategy, the Trade Hub is working with women cereals processors in Burkina Faso to access streams of financing to grow their businesses. From November 7-19, the Hub’s Business Development Specialist, Kafui Djonou, met with these women in Ouagadougou and Bobo to assess how these loans have impacted ...
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  • Ivorian cereals processors have high potential, but lack necessary capital to grow

    November 28, 2016
    Kokou Zotoglo, the Hub’s Cereal Value Chain Specialist, traveled to Côte d’Ivoire in early November to continue his assessment of the capability of lead cereals processing firms in Senegal, Mali, and Côte d’Ivoire to source grains from cereals wholesalers in both the country and region. By traveling to these countries, Zotoglo aimed to promote commercial ...
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  • Trade Hub to collaborate with two USAID-funded projects for greater impact in regional trade

    November 28, 2016
    Last week, the Trade Hub traveled to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso to meet in a USAID-sponsored Partnership meeting with representatives of numerous other projects working in a specific region of Niger and Burkina Faso, and in particular the REGIS-AG and REGIS-ER projects. The Trade Hub met with numerous projects working in the region, and was able ...
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  • Price and quality prevent Senegalese cereal processors from sourcing in West Africa

    October 31, 2016
    The Trade Hub’s Cereal Value Chain Specialist, Kokou Zotoglo, traveled to Dakar, Senegal and Bamako, Mali, to strengthen commercial linkages between breweries, such as Guinness, and cereals processors that could supply brewers’ grits, dried corn kernels used as a malt replacement in beer. The October 19-21 trip also promoted commercial relationships between cereal wholesalers and processors ...
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  • New business skills mean new equipment and expansion for Ghanaian cereals processor

    October 10, 2016
    In April 2016, USAID’s West Africa Trade and Investment Hub organized an agribusiness management and entrepreneurship workshop in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso to train 21 female cereal processors from Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Togo in good business management practices. In West Africa, women entrepreneurs often lack negotiation and business management skills. The Trade Hub designed ...
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  • Deal with Coris Bank paves way for $17 million in loans to agro-processors

    September 19, 2016
    Through an agreement signed September 8 with Trade Hub, the regional Coris Bank group—with subsidiaries in Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Togo, and soon Benin and Senegal—will award up to $17 million in loans for business expansion of small and medium processors and exporters working in cereals, cashew, shea, and other value chains. The Trade ...
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  • WAGN to new trainers: “You are now our ambassadors!”

    August 24, 2016
    Over the past year, the Trade Hub has collaborated with the West African Grains Network (WAGN) to organize trainings to help traders understand the value of written contracts as a way to build trust between trading partners, increase the quality of cereals traded, ensure the use of grades and standards, and develop financial records that ...
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  • Abidjan hosts fourth Regional Cereals Exchange

    August 3, 2016
    In Cote d’Ivoire’s commercial capital, 115 West African stakeholders (including 39 women) from nine countries participated in the fourth cereals exchange organized by the Trade Hub in collaboration with Afrique Verte and the West African Grain Network (WAGN). The July 26-27 event in Abidjan offered a platform for producers and traders to negotiate costs, quantities, quality, ...
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  • Access to finance programs opening more doors for women-owned businesses

    August 2, 2016
    In July, three more women-owned businesses in West Africa secured $49,167 in financing to expand their businesses, thanks to Trade Hub support and coordination with local organizations. The project’s two-tier finance and investment strategy works through a regional network of Financial Advisors for larger businesses and intensively in Burkina Faso with smaller female cereals processors ...
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  • West African cereal traders converge in Abidjan for fourth regional exchange

    July 26, 2016
    One hundred West African cereals producers, traders, and other stakeholders will converge on Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, July 27-28, for the fourth regional cereals exchange. These forums— hosted by the Trade Hub, Afrique Verte and the West African Grain Network—bring together buyers and sellers from across the region to identify new business linkages and other partnerships, negotiate ...
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  • Regional cereal association receives Trade Hub support for improved services to members

    June 6, 2016
    A Trade Hub-supported workshop for administrators and directors of West Africa’s newest regional grains alliance gave intensive instruction in administrative, accounting and financial procedures. The May 30-June 1 workshop in Lome, Togo explained modules from a new manual for the West African Grains Network (WAGN), produced by a local firm, Auditcom Togo Sarl, with backing ...
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  • Dakar exchange attracts independent observers from regional institutions

    March 15, 2016
    More than 90 stakeholders in the cereals sector took part in Dakar’s first cereals exchange, culminating in the signing of 54 contracts for an estimated 18,000 metric tons of produce, by close of business on March 11. The two-day event was the third in a series of regional exchanges conducted by the West Africa Trade ...
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  • More loans for beneficiaries of Trade Hub gender access to finance training

    March 8, 2016
    Three more women-owned cereals processors in Burkina Faso received 17 million CFA in total loans last week. These most recent loans were made by micro-finance institutions, Caisse Populaire and Premiere Agence de Micro Finance, to two cereals processors in Bobo Dioulasso and Banfora, and a rice processing group in Mogtedo. Two weeks ago, four women-owned ...
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  • Cereals traders from 9 West African countries sign purchase contracts

    December 12, 2015
    In early December, 74 West Africans involved in the region’s cereals trade gathered in Burkina Faso’s capital, Ouagadougou, to create new commercial partnerships and strengthen existing relationships. Organized by the Trade Hub and NGO Afrique Verte, this two-day event built upon the success of the first Ouagadougou exchange held in July and attracted new participants ...
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  • Creating linkages between regional cereal traders- PRESS RELEASE

    December 9, 2015
    For immediate release December 9, 2015 Contact: Bill Noble, Value Chain Development Specialist Tel: +233 26 280 0781 Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso — More than 60 cereal sourcing and procurement enterprises, producer associations and inspection companies have converged in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso today for the second quarterly West African Regional Cereals Exchange. The Exchange is organized by the USAID/West Africa Trade ...
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West Africa Trade and Investment Hub - Accra, Ghana - contact@watradehub.com
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