In this issue
Thirty-two-year-old Halatou Dem has been managing the Bamako-based cereal processing company Danaya Céréales for 7 years. The Malian company – with a staff of 33 – exports its processed products to Europe, the US and throughout West Africa.
In ACP countries, the use of smart ‘connected’ devices in agriculture is still at an experimental stage. Yet new projects are emerging, and global trends show how this new technology offers vital development opportunities.
In the remote hilly regions of rural Rwanda, the development of terraced farms is providing employment opportunities for local communities whilst increasing the diversity of crop production.
In drought and flood-prone communities in Mozambique and Rwanda, low carbon initiatives are introducing renewable solar-powered irrigation systems to reduce the use of fossil fuels and increase climate resilience.
Local radio adverts and face-to-face training have persuaded rural Senegalese communities to adopt healthy eating and safer hygiene practices, reducing sickness among children and helping families to generate more income.
A mobile app is providing Kenyan farmers with information on their farm’s soil composition and weather forecasts within minutes. With almost real-time data on soil type, fertiliser requirements and predicted rainfall, smallholders are reducing environmental damage and boosting their climate resilience.
In recent years, new digital technologies such as blockchain have emerged, providing exciting opportunities for improving the ease of doing business in the agricultural sector of ACP countries.
Women around the world are overcoming barriers to establish profitable businesses in the agricultural sector. However, strong links to high-value markets, access to necessary finance and resources, and sufficient business training are essential requirements for women business leaders to break through the ‘glass ceiling’ and expand their agribusinesses to compete on an international scale.
Yemisi Iranloye, managing director and CEO of Psaltry International Limited, a large cassava processor based in south-west Nigeria, has built her success on an inclusive business model that places smallholder farmers at the centre of operations.
The rise of successful female agriculture entrepreneurs in the Caribbean region is welcome. Combining profits and passion, in an otherwise male-dominated sector, women are creating jobs, empowering others and providing food security by producing locally-sustainable food products.
Numerous initiatives are emerging in the agricultural community that illustrate the potential profile of future African farmers – as informed business leaders, who make a good living and are connected online – and prove that agriculture offers exciting opportunities for young people.
In Haiti, a renewed and improved maize seed variety provides seven times the yield of traditional varieties, helping to tackle food insecurity and malnutrition in the country. Farmers interested in working in the seed sector receive training in the production of the seed to ensure the genetic purity is maintained.
Women farmers are using water smart techniques to sustainably increase crop yields, whilst maintaining vital soil ecosystems in Ghana, Malawi and Mali. In these drought-prone countries, establishing water-efficient practices helps to improve smallholder farmers’ access to water and increase the resilience of their livelihoods and local ecosystems.
Secretary general for the Inter-African Coffee Organization (IACO) for 13 years, Josefa Sacko was elected as the African Union (AU) Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture in January 2017.
Thousands of farmers in Mozambique are supporting a drive to improve child nutrition and education by providing food for meals in 170 schools. The 80 farmers’ associations involved in the initiative receive seeds and training in crop management to produce nutritional fruits and vegetables.
Agricultural production in the Caribbean is constrained by limited access to up-to-date, local information. However, recent ICT developments in the region have created e-solutions to these challenges, improving crop production and reducing pests and diseases as well as post-harvest losses.
Over the last decade, remittance flows from diaspora communities to their countries of origin have been steadily increasing. With government support and agriculture-friendly legislation, agriculture could benefit from this substantial source of funding and expertise.
A geographical indication label for a unique variety of pepper in Cameroon is improving the incomes of local farmers and ensuring the long-term future of the product. Recognition of the pepper’s quality and economic importance means it is one of only three African commodities with such a label.