Innovative finance in sustainable agriculture

responsAbility selected for 10 year program to boost resilience of smallholder farmers

Zürich, 23 October 2020 — The Swiss Development Agency for Cooperation and Development (SDC) and the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of Luxemburg, after mobilizing EUR 55m, have selected responsAbility for a 10 year program which will endeavour to enhance the resilience of smallholder farmers in developing countries. To do this, they have created The Smallholder Safety Net Upscaling Program (SSNUP). Officially launched on October 2nd, 2020, it is a unique public-private partnership that draws on the technical assistance management expertise of leading impact investment managers to implement a systemic agricultural value chain development approach.

responsAbility will manage technical assistance projects to boost the development of agricultural value chains, strengthen the safety nets of 3 million smallholder farmers and improve the well-being of 15 million low-income and highly vulnerable people in rural areas.

By promoting inclusive business models and climate-smart agriculture practices, this program aims to make a significant and lasting contribution to achieve several of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):


The first phase of the program will run from 2020 to 2023 and have an estimated budget of EUR 18 million, EUR 12 million of which will be co-funded by Switzerland and Luxembourg, EUR 3 million will come from the private sector and EUR 3 million will be mobilised by other donors.

SSNUP focuses on sharing knowledge with the entire sector, mitigating risks and leveraging impact while investing in the agriculture value chains. ADA, the Luxemburg-based inclusive finance expert, will be in charge of coordinating this innovative program. The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), the Council on Smallholder Agricultural Finance (CSAF) and the Microinsurance Network (MIN), as well as other impact investors including Symbiotics, Incofin, Oikocredit, and the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation are also stakeholders in this program.

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About responsAbility Investments

A leading impact asset manager with a 17-year track record, responsAbility manages USD 3.5 bn of assets invested in over 300 fully ESG-managed high-impact companies across 76 emerging economies. Since the company's inception in 2003, responsAbility-managed funds have disbursed USD 10 bn in private debt and private equity to companies in the sectors of climate finance, sustainable food and financial inclusion whose business models directly support the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

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