Independent Family Farming in the Forest Savanna Mosaic
Indigenous farming systems promote high human productivity along with crop diversification through inter-cropping. These ancient systems involve agro-ecological and socio-cultural processes which lead to the production of quality natural foods and essential nutrients.
Our eco-region sits where the forest meets the savanna across West Africa. It spans the Afro-Tropic nations of Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, and Cameroon.
The biodiversity of Guinean Forest-Savanna Mosaic in the West African Coastal Forests & Savanna, is globally significant yet misunderstood. The area is mostly an agriculture-forest mosaic. These highly modified forests provide food, fuel, fibre and a range of ecosystem services for over 200 million people. The area consists of interlaced tropical forest, savanna, and grassland, that is typified by rolling plains and scattered clusters of inselbergs rising up to 1,500 m above the plains. This includes ‘Sacred Groves’ - or forest patches where communities actively seek to improve species richness through use of social or cultural restrictions.
Abodunde Farms is the largest landowner, and therefore a primary anchor in a network of smallholder family farms going back to the early 20th century.
Abodunde Farms is not smallholder by traditional definition. We are an independent wholesaling operation that farms, and is a buyer and distributor of agricultural commodities from smallholder communities. As such we follow smallholder principles in the ways in which we operate.
Akoko - Edo was one the first local governments established in Nigeria upon independence in 1960, precisely because it sits in the heart of the nations agricultural breadbasket.
Major agricultural activity in Akoko-Edo centers around the cultivation of Yam, Cassava, Plantain, Cocoa, Cashew Seed, Kola Nut, and Palm Oils. Live-Stock, and Tropical Fruits are also part of the mix.
What We Grow, Source & Distribute
The bulk of what we source is cassava, cashew seed and virgin red palm oil. We distribute regionally. Click for expanded array of what we grow & source
in 1494 Pierre Martyr wrote that the "poisonous roots" of a cassava plant were used in the preparation of bread. Cassava was introduced to the western coast of Africa in the sixteenth century by Portugese slave merchants. Cassava is sometimes described as the "Bread of the Tropics”. The Brazilian farinha, and the related gari of West Africa, is an edible coarse flour obtained by grating cassava roots
Cashews thrive in the tropical climates of 20 western and eastern African nations, where about 90% of the raw cashew nuts traded in the global market are grown. The species is native to Northeastern Brazil and Southeastern Venezuela, and later was distributed around the world by Portuguese colonists and explorers.
Red Palm Oil
Palm Oil is in over 50% of edible and non-edible packaged products we find in supermarkets. It has been known in Europe since the 15th century, but it was Liverpool and Bristol slave traders who, in the early 19th century, who began larger-scale imports from Asia and West Africa. Smallholders represent 40% of oil palm plantation areas across the world.
We Source From Smallholders
West Africa has an abundance of indigenous farming systems that utilize and manage the environment on a sustainable basis. The knowledge has been passed down to us over hundreds of years through family bonds and smallholder culture. These relationships give us direct and unmatched access to source a variety tropical crops and fruits grown on thousands of acres of tribal land, giving us advantages in surety of supply.
Best in Class Quality & Process Control
Storage & Packing
We process, pack and store raw foods with process controls that are designed around government mandated SOP's. Our quality standards are rigorous and include portable hermetic storage systems, and regular on-site food analysis. Locally, our processing efficiency and turnaround time are unparalleled, resulting in maximum quality and freshness.
We Adapt To Terrain So As To Better Distribute At Traditional Markets & Local SME's
Africa has the lowest road density of all the continents, this magnifies operating costs. As farmers and traders we also contend with “Wild Wild West” type security issues. These challenges require informal logistics and security protocols, including the use of terrain-adapted delivery trucks, vigilante escorts for certain deliveries, and customized trikes for narrow dirt roads that were built during the colonial era.