Local appropriation

No substitution of local stakeholders

Investment in local expertise and human resources

Pooling of problems and solutions / Economies of scale

Demand-driven intervention / Cost sharing

Participatory approach

South-South cooperation

Export as factor of modernization

Structured relationship between local value chain operators

Cross-cutting focus on youth and gender


This provides a simple framework for continuous improvement, focusing on the business case so that adopting good practice not only facilitates market access, but genuinely helps suppliers run more efficient, profitable and resilient businesses. It consists of three central elements:



COLEACP’s strategy in Rwanda is based on the current situation of the country’s horticultural sector, feedback from a mission in June 2018 and January 2020, and requests for support received to date. The strategy has the following objectives.

  • Support companies that are already on the export market to help them comply with food safety and sustainability requirements and standards.
  • Support producers selling on local and regional markets to help them comply with requirements, mainly regarding food safety issues.
  • Support companies, including processors, to become more competitive through reviewing and advising on their management practices.
  • Support the establishment of a qualified expertise able to support the horticulture sector comply with the markets requirements
  • Support the Competent Authorities to implement a national food safety system and comply with EU sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) requirements, with a focus on the new EU plant health regulation.

Since the beginning of the FFM and FFM-SPS programmes, COLEACP received 10 application for support which led to the signature of 6 action plans with exporting companies, a consulting company and PAFO (Pan African Farmers Organisation).

COLEACP activities for the Rwandese horticultural industry will be implemented either globally (e.g. supporting SPS issues) or individually (e.g. supporting a development project of an export company). Rwandese beneficiaries will be invited to join group training sessions organised at regional level.

Since March 2020, and following the evolution of the Covid-19 situation, COLEACP has adapted its modus operandi and taken a series of measures to continue working while integrating domestic and international guidelines related to the evolution of the pandemic. The safety of human resources, including partners’ staff, service providers, and members, is COLEACP’s priority.

Adjustments have therefore been implemented regarding field activities to comply with the precautionary measures related to COVID-19.
This does not have a direct impact on the main focus areas of the country strategy, but justifies an adaptation of the technical support, an increased use of remote communication and meeting tools, and as much as possible, an accelerated digitisation of advisory and training activities.



At private sector level, topics covered focus on:

  • food safety and SPS requirements (regulations and private standards);
  • pest and disease management in line with EU requirements and the new EU regulation on plant health;
  • risk analysis and internal auditing;
  • sustainable agriculture, with a focus on organic agriculture;
  • management practices, with a focus on processors;
  • market requirements at national, regional and international levels.

COLEACP and PAFO (Pan African Farmers Organization) have signed a memorandum of understanding with the following objective: “Suppliers and processors, especially smallholders in Africa, produce affordable, safe and nutritious food and operate more efficient, sustainable, and inclusive businesses in line with domestic, regional and international market requirements.” PAFO is a continental platform currently composed of 5 regional farmers networks in Africa (EAFF, PROPAC, ROPPA, SACAU, UMNAGRI), representing over 70 organizations of small-scale women and men farmers and producers from 49 countries in Africa. PAFO’s office is located in Kigali. In 2020, The objective of the COLEACP-PAFO collaboration wasto contribute to the design of PAFO’s five-year strategic plan which has been done. In 2020 and 2021, several training courses have been proposed to PAFO members.

The technical support, organised through on-site or group training are targeting producing/processing and exporting companies, professional organisations, service providers, associations and cooperatives, smallholder support structures with the objective of building capacity and internal training systems.


At public sector level, the FFM-SPS application for support from the NPPO has been received in August 2019 and a workshop was carried out in January 2020 with the NPPO in order to identify the needs of the competent authority in the area of SPS.

During the workshop, it was discussed and agreed to focus on one priority crop/pest combination for the COLEACP action plan: False Codling Moth on capsicum. Indeed, in total 64 europhyt interceptions were officially recorded since 2017 from Rwanda (for all fruit and vegetables – annex 2) and 49 were due to capsicum interceptions (presence of false codling moth as a majority but also fruit fly, potato virus Y and missing phytocertificates/additional declarations). Several activities are planned with the NPPO in 2021:

Several activities are planned with the NPPO in 2020 and 2021:

  • Set-up/improve all procedures to be included in the EU “capsicum dossier” (registration of operators, risk profiling of operators, monitoring, inspection,…)
  • The finalization of the capsicum dossier to be transmitted to the EU.
  • Capacity building of the public and private actors regarding the content of the dossier (Good practices at production, harvest and post-harvest levels and monitoring/inspection)

Due to internal restructuration, support to the Rwandese NPPO (newly created RICA – Rwanda Institute for Conservation Agriculture) is limited to standard support.

In connection with these activities, and those aimed at strengthening public services in charge of the national food safety system, strengthening public–private dialogue is also a priority.


Developing partnerships enables more efficient use of funds and is also a way of answering requests for support that are beyond COLEACP’s framework.

Operational partnerships have not yet been initiated in Rwanda, but contacts have been made with TradeMark East Africa, ENABEL (the Belgian development agency), Send a Cow, the Netherlands Embassy (Hortinverst), ITC (Markup programme), IDH and the GIZ. A new programme supporting the horticultural sector, financed by the EU and implemented by OXFAM and TearFund, is starting. COLEACP will link to this programme in order to ensure complementary support.

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