Women-led Nursery
Enterprise Model

Empowering Women Through Sustainable Agriculture

Agriculture plays a pivotal role in shaping livelihoods across South Asia. In Bangladesh, our innovative Women-led Nursery Enterprise Model is about more than just planting seeds; it’s about cultivating opportunities for women. 

Our initiative directly partners with women entrepreneurs in Bangladesh, providing them with the essential tools needed for their agricultural businesses to thrive and generate income. From infrastructure support to technical and marketing training, our model helps support women while building resilience and addressing food insecurity in vulnerable communities and regions. We are not only supporting women in becoming successful entrepreneurs, but this program also contributes to the broader distribution of Bt eggplant, providing farmers with access to the benefits of Bt eggplant.

“I have earned a profit by selling Bt brinjal seedlings, and as a result, I have achieved self-dependence. With the extra income I earn, I am able to provide my children with financial support and enroll them in better schools.”

Moushumi AkhterPlant Nursery Owner
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Seeds of Growth

The Women-led Nursery Enterprise Model is a unique approach to women’s empowerment. A feasibility study conducted in 2022 initially demonstrated the viability of plant nurseries as a method to enhance women’s involvement in the agricultural value chain and promote economic empowerment. The initial findings indicated that plant nurseries provided women with robust income-earning potential and diversified economic opportunities.

In addition to providing financial support for constructing bamboo-framed nurseries within local communities, IREP project specialists offer training in crop loss mitigation, marketing strategies, and efficient nursery management. The women entrepreneurs immersed themselves in the intricacies of business, mastering the production of high-quality saplings and exploring diverse market avenues. As the program has advanced, the business owners have reinvested their income in their nurseries, establishing a niche within their local market.

Plant nursery
Bamboo frames the structure of the nursery, providing sturdy yet lightweight support
Netting protects against pests and inclement weather
Entrepreneurs grow Bt eggplant and other seedlings to supply local farmers
Nurseries located in communities provide farmers with convenient sources for obtaining needed seedlings
When full, nurseries can hold upwards of 20,000 seedlings

Discover more about a few of the women entrepreneurs making a difference in Bangladesh

Anima Biswas

Moushumi Akhter

Munnujan Begum

Ratna Biswas