To drive system-level change, we develop resilient agriculture enterprises that have scalable impact on food security, livelihood improvement and social cohesion. A key component of our approach is creating an ecosystem of visionary and influential leaders – including businesses, governments, non-government organisations and multilaterals – working together for the benefit of target communities.

To achieve this, the following process is typically followed:



Options study


We first develop an understanding of the current state of the community through research, site visits, interviews, and surveys. Then we analyse relevant value chains to understand the root causes of market failure and identify opportunities with the highest likelihood of success and minimum risk to farmers.

We develop recommendations for potential agricultural solutions, taking into account feasibility (what can be produced), viability (which products have sufficient market demand over the short and long-term), and desirability (what does the community want to produce), as well as social, economic, and environmental impacts.

Field trials

Options are developed into proof-of-concepts through an iterative process of field trials. Trials are designed to maximise learning while minimising the level of investment required and risk to the community, funders, and program partners. This work enables us to determine the most suitable agriculture options to take forward.



Once sufficient validation has been achieved through field trials, learnings are consolidated and implemented with the community, taking into consideration the entire value chain.

A Long-term Inclusive (LINC) Enterprise – a type of social enterprise – is often at the crux of our programs. The purpose of a LINC Enterprise is to protect the community’s interests by reducing risk to farmers and redistributing power in their favour. The structure of the LINC Enterprise is determined by the best business model for the community (e.g. cooperative, franchise, partnership, etc.)

As a social enterprise, the LINC Enterprise works towards owning productive assets and more of the value chain to improve the livelihoods of its members, through achieving financial independence. A strong governance system and business processes are also embedded, enabling the LINC Enterprise to protect the community’s interests, help farmers improve the value of their produce and strengthen their role in larger markets, provide farmers access to financial resources, and meet the needs of market partners and funders.      


Over time, scale is achieved as the LINC Enterprise matures and its membership grows to impact more farmers and communities.

Hover on the graph to see further details regarding the LINC Enterprise.


Capacity building ensures the LINC Enterprise becomes more self-reliant and sustainable over time. Business for Development's involvement gradually shifts from hands-on implementation to an advisory role as the community becomes more capable and empowered. The supportive ecosystem of leaders and influencers, developed since program initiation, becomes interwoven with the community.


Once the LINC Enterprise is self-reliant with an ecosystem of partners in place to ensure its long-term sustainability, Business for Development’s role is limited to advising, monitoring and evaluating.