Abodunde Farms is an independent family farming operation, we also have a commercial water factory and a bakery operation. Although Abodunde Farms itself is not smallholder by traditional definition, we exist in and are a partner and support for an ecosystem of smallholders, as such we follow smallholder methods and principles in the way we operate.
Our family history in farming is documented to as far back as 1901, when Nigeria became a British protectorate. Both my maternal and paternal grand parents, Ekpoza and Adebire Kolade, and Sawyer and Felicia Abodunde were farmers, local traders and landowners in what are today the states of Edo and Ekiti, starting in the 1930’s going on through World War 2 and through Nigerian independence in 1960. We have trained and licensed agriculturalists, landowners, and smallholder farmers in every branch of the family tree going back over 100 years.
Abodunde Farms is The largest landowner and cassava producer in a Network of smallholder family farms going back to the early 20th century.
Today, most of Africa’s farming sector is smallholder farming. There are millions of smallholder farms in West Africa and these largely unindustrialized farms vary in size and are owned by individuals, families, communities, and in some cases by the federal government itself.
In 1956 oil was discovered in Nigeria, and in subsequent years government priorities shifted from agriculture to oil and the economy became hopelessly dependent on oil, at the expense of the agricultural heritage. Today traditional crude revenues are beginning to wane, and farming is witnessing renewed interest and development from the federal government, as well as from private landowners and farmers alike. To understand economic transformation in Africa today, one must be conversant of mid 20th century African history. After waves of independence movements across the continent saw Africans take over the governance of their own land and people, most of Africa’s leaders (enabled by foreign cronyism) adopted authoritative forms of government as well as socialist economics. The end result is the endemic corruption and continued exploitation of African people which all led to more poverty.
As result of 21st century technologies and media, Africans are now back in control of their own stories. As such, the continent is presently in midst painful but necessary social and economic transformation.