Katalyst received the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) Prize 2014 for taking development to innovation scale. Commemorating the achievement, a prize giving ceremony was held at the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Headquarter in Paris on 7 October 2014.
The DAC Prize is awarded for taking an innovative approach, instrument or mechanism beyond the pilot phase to a wider application. The winner was selected among ten finalists by the distinguished jury, members of which represent the public and private sector, politicians and development leaders, academics and development professionals around the world.
The prize winning intervention of the project was to facilitate introduction of affordable high-quality mini-packets of seeds for small-scale farmers. Seed was previously available only in large packets which were unaffordable to many small-scale farmers. Based on a market study, Katalyst convinced two leading seed producers to introduce affordable mini-packets of seed. These two companies sold over 1.3 million units of mini-packets which led to increased production and sustainable higher incomes for small-scale farmers. Today, these mini-packets of quality seed are available for sale in 55 out of 64 districts of Bangladesh.
Mr. Erik Solheim, Chairman of the Development Assistance Committee, stated – “Among the factors that impressed the jury was vast impact that a simple innovation has achieved, and how the programme managed to open a new market segment while at the same time addressed several important development challenges with a low-tech, scalable approach”. Mr. Samuel Bon, CEO of Swisscontact – the implementing agency of the project, Mr. Mujibul Hasan – Senior Technical Advisor, Katalyst and Mehzabin Ahmed – Senior Business Consultant, Katalyst, attended the award giving ceremony.