Hills Global is an agricultural processing company based in South-West Nigeria.
In 2020, Hills Global and its network of farmers faced the triple challenge of COVID-19 with crippling movement restrictions affecting product sourcing and distribution, African swine fever which affected grasscutter and pig sales and attacks from Fulani herdsmen who invaded the farms in Ogun State, disrupting production.
With the pandemic disrupting the importation of Irish potatoes from Europe which dominates the market, Hills Global tapped into the opportunity to diversify its products while meeting the demand for potatoes.
Rich in Vitamin A, sweet potatoes are fast becoming a popular food item in Nigeria. Hills Global had previously processed sweet potatoes for animal feed, but when the opportunity for a healthy alternative to imported potato chips presented itself, the company swiftly pivoted to this new market.
With relief funding and technical advice from the AECF, the company focused on increasing its market share for sweet potatoes through the introduction of sweet potato chips and flour, while revitalising the outgrowers’ schemes that had faced disruption from the Fulani herdsmen.
The Hills Global sweet potato chips entered most major supermarket outlets across Nigeria, and in December 2020, secured a contract to supply their sweet potato chips to Shoprite, a large supermarket chain in Nigeria. The company estimates it will sell 100 tonnes of sweet potato chips and 25 tonnes of sweet potato flour a month by the end of 2021, providing a boost to local agricultural value chains with at least 907 sweet potato farmers poised to reap long-lasting benefits.