Micro investing is as a concept going through three phases, a pilot project, finding a good model for scaling up the approach, and finally: a coordinated, international rollout.
The Pilot in Tanzania focused on reaching a proof of concept, identifying keys to scaling and barriers that need to be overcome. In the next phase, the Model takes the concept to Malawi, while at the same time involving observers from several countries to arrive a core approach that can be replicated across sub-Saharan Africa and possibly on other continents.
The introduction in Tanzania was a project with several partners, while Malawi will test a well-planned roll-out approach, where a team of agronomists under the management of one single implementing partner set up an operation that will serve a concentrated area.
The goal for the Malawi rollout is to establish a model which can be replicated in several other countries and scaled up to reach a large portion of smallholders with the potential to become commercial farmers.
The Scale-up phase will use the standardised approach and is envisioned as an internationally funded and coordinated programme.
The requirement to leave self-sustainable farmers behind as quickly as possible and move on to the next section or district requires a roll-out team to establish regular service
in a large number of villages and serve a growing number of participants in each village until the new practice is well established
The NGO-led rollout in each district has three main milestones: 1) form a complete partnership around a concept that is ready to go, 2) make the farmers able to grow on market-based terms, and then 3) exit. The exit then becomes a flying start where systems and compe- tencies are reused in the next district. Results are evaluated contin- uously through active performance management, and governmental recognition is sought step by step to secure long-term policy alignment.