Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Launch of the United Nations World Water Development Report

WWAP (UNESCO World Water Assessment Programme). 2019. The United Nations World Water Development Report 2019: Leaving No One Behind. Paris, UNESCO. 202 pages

19 March 2019. Geneva. Launch of the United Nations World Water Development Report (WWDR) - the flagship publication of UN-Water on the state of global freshwater resources.

#WorldWaterDay


UN World Water Development Report 2019: Leaving No One Behind
You can download the report when you click on the download icon (right upper on your screen of the online versions:

English | Français | Español (pdf)
Executive Summary
English | Français | Español | Русский | ا لعربية | 中文 (pdf)
Italiano | Português | ภาษาไทย | Deutsch | Korean (pdf)
Main messages
English (pdf)
Facts and Figures
English | Français | Español (pdf)
Italiano | Português (pdf)

Media corner | Global launch | Regional launches

Improved water resources management and access to safe water and sanitation for all is essential for eradicating poverty, building peaceful and prosperous societies, and ensuring that ‘no one is left behind’ on the road towards sustainable development.
  • In an increasingly globalized world, the impacts of water-related decisions cross borders and affect everyone. 
  • Extreme events, environmental degradation, population growth, rapid urbanization, unsustainable and inequitable consumption patterns, conflicts and social unrest, and unprecedented migratory flows are among the interconnected pressures faced by humanity, often hitting those in vulnerable situations the hardest through their impacts on water.
  • Addressing the inequalities faced by disadvantaged groups requires tailored solutions that take account of the day-to-day realities of people and communities in vulnerable situations. 
  • Properly designed and adequately implemented policies, efficient and appropriate use of financial resources, as well as evidence-based knowledge on water resources and water-related issues are also vital to eliminating inequalities in access to safe drinking water and sanitation.


Upcoming event:
19 - 22 March 2019. Praia, Cabo Verde. International Forum on Water Scarcity in Agriculture. The objective of the forum was to identify concrete - practical, innovative and collaborative - solutions to address water scarcity in agriculture in a changing climate. With a focus on Cabo Verde, Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and West African countries, the forum is expected to illustrate how water scarcity in agriculture can be addressed and turned into an opportunity for sustainable development, food and nutrition security.
#WASAG

  • Technical session - Drought preparedness
  • Technical session - Water and nutrition
  • Technical session - Sustainable agriculture water use
  • Technical session - Saline agriculture
  • Technical session - Financing mechanisms for sustainable management of water resources
  • Technical session - Water and migration
Upcoming event:
31 March - 4 April 2019. Cairo. Land and Water Days in the NENA Region 2019
It is five years since the first Near East and North Africa Land and Water Days took place in Amman, Jordan, 15-18 December 2013. At this event, FAO and its partners established the Water Scarcity Initiative along with its Regional Collaborative Strategy and Partnership.

The Near East and North Africa Land and Water Days will review the progress made in addressing water scarcity in the region, foster exchange of knowledge and experience among countries and partners and chart the way forward taking into account the lessons learned.

Thematic areas:
  1. Pathways to sustainable scarce-water-resources management
  2. Halting land degradation
  3. Land and Water Governance to achieve the SDGs in fragile systems
  4. Impacts of climate change on regional development and prospects for increased resilience
  5. Outlook and prospects: scaling-up investments in water for agriculture
Extract of the programme
  • 31 March. Plenary Session 1: Water Scarcity
  • 2 April: Technical Session Monitoring and assessment of climate change in the NEMA and understanding its impact on the land and water resources, agriculture and ecosystems 
  • 2 April: Technical Session Land Degradation (LS) Monitoring across scales
  • 2 April: Technical Session  Water Scarcity from options to actions what does it takes?: Collective intelligence, information and research

Background:
The aim of Land and Water Days is to increase awareness of the role of sustainable land and water management in improving local livelihoods.

FAO organizes Land and Water Days in coordination with the International Fund for Agricultural Development and the World Food Programme. Land and Water Days are opportunities for exchanging innovative approaches and lessons learned on sustainable land, soil and water management among practitioners, country representatives and other stakeholders and for promoting the uptake of best practices.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Key findings of the the Malabo-Montpellier Panel reports for AfDB

18 March 2019. Abidjan. The Malabo Montpellier Panel: High Level Policy Innovation through evidence and dialogue in agriculture

This event co-organised by the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the Malabo Montpellier Panel in Abidjan, Côte d'ivoire, covered the thematic areas covered under the Panel’s first three reports and bring together members of the Panel to present the key findings and recommendations, and to exchange with the experts at the AfDB.

They also discussed the way forward regarding the appropriation of the outcome of the reports by policy makers and planners in order to inform policy reforms and investments to be supported by the Bank and other Development Partners. 

Particularly, the discussion focused on the communication approach followed by the Panel so far and identifies possible improvement if necessary. Finally, during the event some insights on priority topics for future reports by the Panel were discussed.

Since January 2017, the Malabo Montpellier Panel has published three reports.
  1. Nourished: How Africa Can Build a Future Free from Hunger and Malnutrition (September 2017); 
  2. Mechanized: Transforming Africa’s agriculture value chains (July 2018); 
  3. and Water-Wise: Smart Irrigation Strategies for Africa (December 2018). 
The thematic areas covered under these reports tie in closely with the AfDB’s Hi 5 Agenda.

The International Africa Development Forum for South-South cooperation

14 March 2019. Casablanca Morocco. 6th edition of the International Africa Development Forum under the theme « When East meets West », organized by the Attijariwafa bank group and under the impetus of its reference shareholder, the Pan-African Private Investment Fund Al Mada, was opened today

Launched in 2010, and taking place annually since 2015, the Africa Development Forum has established itself as the reference platform for dialogue, investment promotion and intra-African trade. From one edition to the next, the Forum has provided many opportunities for exchanges and investments between economic operators on the continent and its partners. Since its creation, the Forum has brought together more than 7,500 operators from 36 countries and generated more than 17,000 business meetings. This edition is also marked by the presence of many ministers from several countries of the Continent.
« While the global economy experienced a period of expansion in 2018, the world seems to have once again entered a period of slowdown and increasing uncertainty. Indeed, the escalation of trade tensions, the questions surrounding growth in Asia and Brexit, seem to be at the origin of international institutions’ downward revisions of the rates of economic growth and global trade. This has been accompanied by high volatility in oil and commodity prices since August 2018, driven in particular by geopolitical tensions, as well as by tighter financial conditions in emerging countries. This combination of opportunities and threats facing our continent underscores more than ever the need for structural reforms and enhanced economic integration in order to further unleash the energies that create wealth and value ». M. Mohamed El Kettani, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Attijariwafa bank group


The Africa Development Club, which constitutes an extension of the Forum, also provides its services to its 3,000 members all year long. Such services include business meetings, sectoral missions, networking platforms and access to information in all the countries where Attijariwafa bank is established and beyond.

  1. discussion on concrete issues involving high level experts, 
  2. business meetings connecting African companies 
  3. Investment Marketplace

The « Investment Marketplace » featured Sierra Leone as a guest of honor, and 7 other African countries : Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali and Rwanda presented their national development plans as well as investment opportunities in key high growth sectors in order to achieve their development goals. More than 4,000 B to B meetings have been scheduled confirming the interest of operators in this event.

Distinguished economic experts and political leaders examined the rationale behind intra-regional integration in terms of value creation and opportunities through plenaries, panels and awards :

  1. Plenary 1 : « Accelerate economic regional integration »
  2. Plenary 2 : « The positive impact, guarantor of solidarity and responsible growth »
  3. Panel 1 « Stand up for African Women Entrepreneurs », addressed the challenges faced by African women entrepreneurs in order to federate everyone’s energy and support women’s entrepreneurship. « Stand up for African Women Entrepreneurs » is supporting African women’s commitment and their determination to actively contribute to the development of the African continent. 
  4. Panel 2 : « Digital, a lever of growth in Africa : contribution of young African start-ups ».
  5. Award 1 : « South-South Cooperation Awards Ceremony » companies committed to development of Intra-African trade and investments 
  6. Award 2 : « Young Entrepreneur Awards Ceremony »  young entrepreneurs and project leaders at the African level.

33 artists featured young emerging talent from the Continent and the diaspora, as well as well-established artists. In partnership with the Arkane Association, « Travel Weast » offers a number of perspectives on themes such as the strong commitment of women, environmental issues and access to energy, immigration and globalization. 

Sunday, March 17, 2019

5th General Assembly of the Arab Water Council

16-17 March 2019. Cairo, Egypt.  5th General Assembly of the Arab Water Council . During this triennial event, more than 400 members and experts representing 25 countries and several regional and international organizations gathered to get acquainted with the Council achievements since the last meeting of the GA in February 2016, and discussed the way forward by approving the Council’s future Work Plan for the next term 2019-2021, and to elect its Board of Governors for the forthcoming mandate until 2021.
The water problems are numerous, especially in the Arab region, given the growing population growth, the Arab region is an arid region and there is an increasing impact of climate change on food safety. Arab countries import more than 50% of their food from abroad. The water situation in the region is critical and requires measures, partnerships and non-traditional solutions to address these challenges. It is time for the Arabs to accept these challenges. Ahmed Aboul Gheit Secretary General of the Arab League
"Water is the basis of life and the nerve of civilization It must be recognized that the Arab countries are facing great challenges in providing water to industry, consumption, food and energy security, problems of change of rainy weather. The whole world is looking at the Arab Water Council and its research to leverage its expertise in order to achieve a comprehensive Arab cooperation in order to overcome all the difficulties encountered by the action. common water in the Arab world face these challenges. In order to achieve economic and political stability, to the extent permitted by the capabilities of the Arab States." Mr. Saifuddin Hamad former Sudanese Minister of Irrigation
References: 
The technical activities included:

Launching of the SDG-Climate Nexus Facility
Under the framework of the League of Arab States Climate Risk Nexus Initiative (LAS- CRNI) and the Arab Water Security Strategy (2010-2030) towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the 2030 Agenda in the Arab region, the Arab Water Council (AWC), along with LAS and UN Partners convened the “Official Launching Ceremony of the SDG-Climate Nexus Facility.”

The Facility adapts a multi-phased program that aims at bringing together partners from regional organizations, governments, UN, private finance sector, civil society and academia, to undertake a series of national and regional activities - using a nexus approach - to support bottom-up local actions under SDG13 and the Paris Agreement on climate change to bring about clear co-benefits for core-related SDGs.

Technical Session on “The Arab Water Council Program to Support the Regional Endeavor for Expanding the Use of Non-Conventional Water Resources”
The future of the “Arab Water Security” will largely depend on the development of the non-conventional water resources (NCWR)(desalinated water, treated drainage and wastewater, brackish groundwater, etc...), which offers great potential. NCWR utilization is multi-faceted regarding the knowledge, expertise, consideration for the technical, socio-economic, cultural and environmental aspects and the special governance structure. 

The session presented “Case Studies” from the Arab Countries. The session shared knowledge and  information about recent developments and innovation in policies, institutions, technologies, applications and management of non-conventional water in different uses. It also explored and the way forward towards sustainable expansion of non-conventional water resources. This will bridge the gap between the available water resources and the increasing demand on water for achieving the prospective development in the Arab region. 

Technical Session on “Indicators of State of the Water Report and Sustainable Development in the Arab Region” 
With the aim of developing a consolidated database for water resources management, AWC – jointly with the Center for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE), under the umbrella of the Arab Water Ministerial Council of the League of Arab States – has taken the lead in preparing and publishing on regular basis a series of “State of the Water Reports in the Arab Region” to present the country level water resources assessment on the Arab scale, together with the methodology applied. 

The series of reports represents a unique initiative by the Water Sector in the Arab Region on the road to the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, to monitor progress and achievement. The Session will shed the light on the updated information concerning the status of water strategic policy and service-related indicators in the Arab region. The collection and validation of the data associated with the selected indicators were obtained through selected focal points and experts from the Arab countries.

Extract of the programme:

Arab State of the Water and Sustainable Development Goals Indicators
The session discussed the Sustainable Development Goal 6 on “Clean Water and Sanitation” (SDG6) and its associated targets as well as the 2015 baseline for the indicators to measure the progress made in achieving these targets.
  • Prof. Khaled M. AbuZeid, Regional Director for Water Resources, CEDARE. Overview on “3rd Arab State of the Water Report 2015”
  • Eng. Belkassem Dhimi, Representative of the Kingdom of Morocco to the Board of Governors of the Arab Water Council.
  • Dr. Mohammed Elmulla, Director Water Resources Management Department and Representive of United Arab of Emirates to the Board of Governors of the Arab Water Council.
  • H.E. Eng. Ali Subah, Secretary-General, Ministry of Water & Irrigation and Representive of Kingdom of Jordan to the Board of Governors of the Arab Water Council.
  • Ms. Rana Abu AlSoud, Acting Director General for Organizational Affairs and Head of Gender Unit and Representive of Palestine to the Board of Governors of the Arab Water Council.
Use of Advanced Technology and Remote Sensing Techniques in Water Resources Management for Sustainable Agriculture
the main objective of the session is to bring together new science and policy knowledge to support decision-makers as they further develop their strategic plans by highlighting recent research advances in conceptual thinking and regional modeling and by sharing experiences and success stories on the use of latest Remote Sensing (RS) technologies in water and agriculture management.
  • Mr. Liping Jiang, Sr. Water Resources Specialist, World Bank. “China’s Experience on ET Management”
  • Dr. Talal Darwish, National Council for Scientific Research, National Center for Remote Sensing (CNRS), Lebanon. “Research Priorities and Activities of the National Center for Remote Sensing-CNRS in Agriculture”
  • Dr. Chandrashekhar Biradar, International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA). “Geo-Big Data and Digital Augmentation for Sustainable Agroecosystems”.

  • Dr. Bassam Abdellatif, National Authority for Remote Sensing and Space Sciences (NARSS). “NARSS Use of Remote Sensing in Integrated Water Resources Management in Egypt
Main Results of the IHP Program on Groundwater and Arid Zones and Program Activities to Achieve SDG 6
The UNESCO International Hydrological Programme (UNESCO-IHP) is the only UN programme with a dedicated focus on aquifers and groundwater resources.

Expanding the Use of Non-Conventional Water Resources
The latest in the use of non-conventional water resources both at the regional and country levels.
  • Dr. Eman El-Sayed, MWRI, Egypt.“Non-Conventional Water Resources in Egypt”.
  • Prof. Walid Abderrahman, KSA. “Advanced Governance Frameworks for Successful PPP and Large-Scale Reuse of Treated Industrial Effluents in Saudi Arabia ”. 
  • Prof. Mohamed Dawoud and Dr. Osama Sallam, UAE“UAE experience in Scaling-up Development and Use of Non-Conventional Water Resources”.
  • Prof. Khaled M. AbuZeid, CEDARE. A 2030 Strategic Vision for Wastewater Reuse in Egypt”. 
Signing Ceremony of the SDG-Climate Facility
“SDG Climate Facility”, funded by Sida and implemented by UNDP, was signed between UNDP and LAS, AWC and UN Partners to support climate action at regional and country levels and to build resilience of climate-vulnerable communities across the region. 

From right to left: 
Mahmoud A. Abu-Zeid - President Arab Water Council
Ahmed Aboul Gheit - Secretary General of the Arab League
Aly Abousabaa - Director General ICARDA
 
Under this agreement, partners will work towards enhancing the capacity of regional and national institutions to effectively align with SDGs and integrate climate change considerations into implementation of programs and policies.

Related:
The issue of water is at the heart of the challenges of the Arab world and ICARDA’s mandate
Signing by ICARDA of the MoU with the

the Arab Water Council

The Arab Water Council (AWC) aims at initiating and strengthening regional and international cooperation and partnerships to tackle water-related challenges. 

Hence, a closer collaboration with ICARDA in areas of joint and mutual interest was obvious. The two partners agreed to cooperate in resource mobilization and fundraising activities including proposal writing. The proposed cooperation under the Memorandum of Understanding is non-exclusive and shall have an initial term of five years.

Joint project development can cover a variety of activities such as:
  • reducing evaporation losses from open reservoirs and Ponds in Arab Region; 
  • sea water level rise and changes in cropping system; 
  • eco physiological strategies to reduce water consumption in agriculture; 
  • soil fertility and quality management; soil salinity mapping, monitoring and control; 
  • assessment of surface-groundwater interactions quantity-quality relationships for sustainable use; water treatment in groundwater-based agriculture; 
  • monitoring and modeling of the water cycle under a changing climate at multiple scales; 
  • studying water balance components at plot, watershed and basin scales; long term hydrological modeling under climate change and socioeconomic scenarios; 
  • impart capacity on hydrological/ecohydrological modeling and spatio-temporal data analysis of hydrological data.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Webinar with the co-authors of the EAT Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, and Health

Published on 11 March 2019. The recent EAT-Lancet review of the global food system has been widely welcomed. By connecting, for the first time, scientific targets for both global healthy diets and sustainable food production, the report outlines what a sustainable and healthy food system for 10 billion people, all within planetary boundaries, by the middle of the century, could look like.

See PAEPARD blogpost Food in the Anthropocene

In this ANH Academy webinar co-hosted in collaboration with Ag2Nut, two of the co-authors of the EAT Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, and Health - Dr. Jessica Fanzo and Dr. Fabrice DeClerck - joined talk about the report.

Related:

 

Access Agriculture – reaching more than 68 million farmers

Access Agriculture – reaching more than 68 million farmers

Access Agriculture has reached more than 68 million farmers through its videos and audio soundtracks. An on-line survey, just finalised, involved participants from 115 countries. Two thirds of users are watching the videos direct on the site with one third registering and downloading.
  • Most people using the site are sharing the videos either directly with farmers or with colleagues involved in extension. Users like Access Agriculture so much, that 900 of those who took the survey shared the platform with other organisations.
  • From the 2,210 people who took part in the survey 80% have learned about Access Agriculture in the past three years. 78% of participants were from Africa and most were male. More half are younger than 40.
  • Two thirds of those surveyed have watched more than 5 videos. Downloads of factsheets and other impact studies and publications were popular with around 30% of users.
Summary of the survey reportGlobal use
Over 200,000 people from across the globe have visited the Access Agriculture website to watch and download farmer training videos. 

To find out what visitors to the website do with the videos a global on-line survey was conducted in 2018. The 2223 respondents came from 115 countries, mainly from Africa (78%), Asia-Pacific (10%), and the Americas (7%).
  • They download the videos (84%), fact sheets (31%), 3gp versions for mobile phones (29%), publications (29%) and audio (9%).
  • Respondents use the videos to train themselves (64%), farmers (55%), students (46%) and extensionists (40%).
  • Those most likely to use the videos in farmer training are: extensionists (44%), rechearchers (33%), farmers (33%), and educators (31%).
  • Nearly all of the respondents find the videos and the website useful, and many use the videos for training more than 6 times a year.
  • Nearly 60% of the respondents share the videos with other organisations; they listed 1751 organisations by name.
From 2013 to 2018, over 3 million farmers watched Access Agriculture videos during screenings, on DVD or on their mobile.

With 44 TV stations across the South broadcasting the videos, over 60 million watched some of the programmes on TV. Many also listened to radio broadcasts, using the audio tracks of some of the videos. 

The summary of the survey is available here: Access Agriculture 2018 on-line survey - Summary

EDULINK, ACP Science and Technology compendium 2012 – 2018.

EDULINK, ACP Science and Technology, ACP Caribbean and Pacific Research Programme for Sustainable Development Results and impacts 2012 – 2018.
© ACP Secretariat 2019,246 pages
The compendium is in both English and French

This compendium presents the results of the 78 projects of the EDULINK Phase II (47), ACP Science and Technology Phase II (21), and the ACP Caribbean and Pacific Research Programme for Sustainable Development (10), with the first project having started in August 2012 and the last having finished in October 2018. From the 287 involved institutions, 198 originated from 45 ACP countries. 

The results achieved over these six years and the impacts envisaged, some of which have already been realised, present an interesting insight into the effectiveness of the wide variety of initiatives financed by the three programmes. They vary from new curricula and courses to national action plans, electronic platforms and databases within the fields of agriculture, energy, water and climate change. These have also been made available through publications and websites.
  • The ACP Science and Technology I programme was financed by the Intra-ACP envelope of the 9th European Development Fund (EDF) and the Development Co-operation Instrument (DCI) with a total EU investment of EUR 33 million
  • The ACP Science and Technology II programme was financed by the Intra-ACP envelope of the 10th EDF and the DCI with a total EU investment of EUR 20 million. The purpose of the programme was to build and strengthen the STI capacities of a wide range of ACP organisations.
Extracts:

MAK’IT, the new “Montpellier Advanced Knowledge Institute on Transitions”

7 March 2019. MAK’IT, the new “Montpellier Advanced Knowledge Institute on Transitions”, which promotes inter-disciplinary research and knowledge sharing towards the SDGs.

In advising the MAK’IT team on how to make the institute a success, David Nabarro and Louise Fresco share cunning insights on the kind of science we need to support the achievement of the SDGs, insights that can inspire many of us in this CoP.

Louise Fresco challenges scientists, saying that “many times, science has been stuck at the diagnosis of the problems – which is very good – but we now must move collectively to solution-driven science”, going beyond “partial solutions”, and stepping outside “our ivory towers” by engaging people in society. She reflects on the ambition behind the SDGs and invites us to think beyond the specific targets, calling for a “turning around of our way of thinking” for example thinking of “a new economic system where value is given to things that don’t have value today, where poverty is a cost..”.

David Nabarro invites us to “see the SDGs as a Compass not as a blueprint, a compass to help guide collective action and make a magnetic field.” He explains his discomfort with set targets, which tend to drive activities in a linear way to address challenges that cannot be subject to linear solutions, and invites us to think about science-based pathways.

He invents the verb “to science” to describe the act of engagement in ultimate scientific practice and calls for all of us to learn to be comfortable with complexity, reminding us that being scientific is about putting ideas to the test, and that doubt is part of the exercise. And he calls for “leaders who can hold multiple perspectives simultaneously, can start where people are and link with their environment,who can see the whole of the system as well as the individual parts.”



3rd One Planet Summit

14 March 2019. Nairobi. While Africa is responsible for only 4% of global greenhouse-gas emissions, 65% of the African population is considered to be directly impacted by climate change.

This first regional edition of the One Planet Summit highlighted the unique role of Africa as a global partner facing both challenges and opportunities, in particular in the field of innovative solutions for adaptation and resilience.

  • The Summit brought together high-level officials, CEOs and inspiring voices from youth, and civil society to showcase concrete achievements and breakthrough initiatives, and trigger new coalitions and commitments.
  • Designed as a full day of High-Level conversations and Coalition building for Climate and Environmental action in Africa, the event preceded the high-level segment of UNEA-4.

Extacts of the high level programme
NEW BUSINESS MODELS FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY IN AFRICA
  • African Solutions: New Business Models Akinwumi Adesina, President, African Development Bank @1:14 in below video
  • High Level Address on Adaptation and Resilience  Kristalina Georgieva, Interim President, World Bank Group
Scaling up solutions
  • Stephen Chege, Director Corporate Affairs, Safaricom 
  • Samba Bathily, Co-founder &and CEO, Solektra International 
  • Soham El Wardini, Mayor of Dakar, Senegal 
  • Jean-Bernard Lévy, Chairman and CEO, EDF

Pitch Hubs: To Display Africa’s innovative Climate Solutions (focus on agriculture)
  • Kenya Tea Development Agency and AFD
    KTDA invests in tea and other related profitable ventures for the benefit of the shareholders and other stakeholders. It benefits to 350,000 smallholder tea farmers and 39 of their regional tea factories
    Jean-Pierre Barral, Head of Energy and Digital Transition, AFD
    Japhet B. Sayi, General Manager, KTDA Power Company
  • Big Data for Climate Smart Agriculture
    Technology can contribute to enhancing the agricultural sector by make it more productive and more resilient to climate change. This pitch illustrated this by focusing on one of the projects led by the Government of Kenya aiming to improve agriculture through enhanced agrometeorological data analysis.
    Boniface O. Akuku, Director Information & Communication Technology, Agriculture Observatory
  • 4 per 1000 initiative
    The ambition of 4 per 1000 is to encourage actors to engage in a transition towards a productive agriculture, highly resilient, based on an appropriate land and soil management, creating jobs and income and thus promoting sustainable development
    Leigh Ann Winowiecki, Soil Systems Scientist, The World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF)
    Murielle Trouillet, Policy Officer, International Sustainable Development, Ministry of Agriculture and Food, France
  • MIKOKO, co-management of green infrastructures
    Nature-based solutions are key to enhance the impacts of the ecosystem. Discover an African flagship project on the preservation of mangroves, using sustainability science and spatial technologies, for a positive change on communities and climate.
    Wanja Dorothy Nyingi, Head of Ichthyology, National Museums of Kenya and Coordinator, Kenya Wetlands Biodiversity Research Group (KENWEB)
    James Gitundu Kairo, Coordinating Author of the IPCC’s Special Report on Oceans and Cryosphere (SROCC), Kenyan Forest Services
    Stéphanie Duvail, Geographer and Mangroves Specialist, IRD 
  • Livelihoods Fund - Mt Elgon Initiative
    Along with Brookside and VI Agroforestry, discover a key project that will implement smart agricultural practices to sustainably increase yield and milk production with crop diversification, cow efficient feeding, watering & breedingBernard Giraud, Co-founder and President
    John Gethi, Director of Milk Procurement, Brookside Dairy Ltd.
    Wangu Mutua, Deputy Regional Director, Vi Agroforestry
Sector panels - Extract
CLIMATE INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES IN CITIES 
Sub-Saharan Africa’s cities are home to more than 470 million people that are expected to double over the next 25 years. Climate impacts on agricultural yield are likely to exacerbate rural-to-urban migration and put pressure on urban infrastructure and services in the coming decades. This session brought together speakers to discuss how cities in Africa and in emerging markets around the world can leapfrog historical approaches to urban development and invest in low-carbon, resilient infrastructure. 

Panelists discussed how to connect cities with financing to implement resilient and green urban development strategies and mobilize private sector finance that is crucial to climate action. 
  • James Wainaina Macharia, Cabinet Secretary for Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development, Kenya 
  • Hans Peter Lankes, Vice President of Economics & Private Sector Development, IFC 
  • Mohamed Sefiani, Mayor of Chefchaouen, Morocco 
  • Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Executive Director, UN-Habitat 
  • Marjeta Jager, Deputy Director General for International Cooperation and Development, European Commission 
INTEGRATED LANDSCAPES MANAGEMENT 
Over 25 years after Rio, there is more recognition of the importance of Africa’s terrestrial and coastal landscapes in delivering multiple production and ecosystem service benefits to support the continent’s transformation. This event provided different countries and champions of Africa’s landscape restoration and integrated management an opportunity to show case actions in a variety of different critical landscapes (from coastal to drylands and highlands). 

The panelists identifiedy key ingredients of effective participatory implementation, specify further needs, and share selected opportunities for leveraging support. 
  • Amedi Camara, Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development, Mauritania 
  • Almoustapha Garba, Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development, Niger 
  • Hamadi Boga, Principal Secretary, State Department of Agriculture, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation, Kenya 
  • Laura Tuck, Vice President of Sustainable Development, World Bank Group 
  • William Kwende, Chairman, Agritech 
  • Ibrahim Thiaw, Executive Secretary, UNCCD 

Announcing the 8th African Agriculture Science Week (AASW8) and the FARA General Assembly (GA)


13 March 2019. 
Cairo. The Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation launched the official site of the 8th African Agriculture Science Week (AASW8) and the FARA General Assembly (GA). 

The event was coordinated by the Local Organizing Committee of AASW8 domiciled in the Egyptian Agricultural Research Council (ARC). While launching the site and registering as the first official participant to the Science Week, Professor Ezz El-Din Abusteiet, the Egyptian Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation, conveyed the commitment of the Egyptian Government, under the leadership of His Excellency President Abdelfattah El-Sisi, to extend a helping hand to the rest of Africa in supporting Agricultural Research for Development (AR4D) towards making the continent food and nutrition secure. Recognizing that the AASW8 is coming at a time when the Arab Republic of Egypt is at the presidency of the African Union, Prof. Abusteiet further stated that the Egyptian government recognizes the meeting as a landmark linkage between Egypt and the rest of Africa to strengthen research, trade and knowledge exchange in the context of achieving the targets of the Malabo Declaration on accelerated agricultural growth and transformation for shared prosperity and improved livelihoods.

Thanking the Egyptian Government, the Executive Director of FARA, Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo stated that the launching of the website was taking place following significant progress and partnership in FARA’s engagement with ARC since the signing of the agreement of the hosting right with the Egyptian government. Dr. Akinbamijo further conveyed the goodwill message of FARA’s Board Chair, Dr. Ephraim Mukisira, who expressed FARA’s gratitude for the unflinching support of the Arab Republic of Egypt and show of commitment in hosting the event.

The theme for the 8th African Agriculture Science Week is Innovations, Institutions and People. The AASW and FARA GA meeting is the principal forum for all stakeholders in African agriculture Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) to reflect on their achievements and craft strategies and actions aimed at enhancing the contribution of agriculture STI towards accelerating the continent’s economic and social transformation. This event is organized every three years. The last such event, the 7th AASW and FARA GA, were held in Kigali, Rwanda in June 2016.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Making Agribusiness Work

Making Agribusiness Work' course, which will help you to contribute to local entrepreneurial development and food security. Over the years, iCRA experienced that many business support services (BSS) find it hard to attract new clients and projects. They need to invest a lot of time in search for new funding, while they rather use that time to support small-scale producers and processors - and doing the work they love and do best.

Making Agribusiness Work is offered in English and in French. For more information about the French course go here


Where-When/Europe: Wageningen, the Netherlands and online
4 - 15 November 2019, (7 Oct - 20 Dec full programme incl online learning)

Where-When/Africa:  
15 - 26 April 2019, Benin (in French)
17 - 28 June 2019, Nigeria
18 - 29 Nov 2019, Kenya

Who can attend this course? The course is specially designed for professionals who...
  • Are practitioners and field staff from private business support services, produrer or trade based organizations, small and medium entreprises and government extension services
  • Work in a business context in agri-sector and want to contribute to local entrepreneurial development and food security.
  • Are ambitious and want to make a change
  • Are proficient in English Course locations
Course costs: Tuition fee: 2497 euros
  • Scholarship information incl the application form can be found HERE
  • Scholarship application deadline is 21 March 2019.
  • MENA Scholarship Programme (MSP). The MSP is open to professionals who are nationals of - and living and working in - one of following countries listed:  Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan , Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Pan-African Parliamentary Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition

1-2 March 2019. Johannesburg, South Africa. The Pan-African Parliamentary Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition (PAPA-FSN) members recently met to discuss strengthening and consolidating capacities of parliamentarians to position food security and nutrition, as well as the right to adequate food, at the forefront of political and legislative agendas at both regional and national levels..

Held at the Pan-African Parliament (PAP) Headquarters in Midrand, the event was held under the theme “legislating for the right to adequate food; nutrition and sustainable food systems for healthy diets, gender and social policies, access to and control of productive resources, responsible investments in agriculture and food systems, budgeting to achieve zero hunger and partnering for resource mobilization."
“Approximately one person in four in Sub-Saharan Africa and one in five on the continent have suffered from chronic food deprivation in 2017. The overall situation of food security and nutrition (FSN) in Africa continues to worsen. We are consequently obliged to reflect and review policies and legislation with the aim to achieve zero hunger.” Stephen Julius MASELE President of the Pan-African Parliamentary Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition 
The themes included:
  • legislating for the right to adequate food; 
  • nutrition and sustainable food systems for healthy diets
  • gender and social policies
  • access to and control of productive resources
  • responsible investments in agriculture and food systems; budgeting to achieve zero hunger and partnering for resource mobilization. 
The meeting also discussed the way forward towards the adoption of a regional model law on food security and nutrition.

Building Africa’s resilient agricultural future - UK/Morocco partnership announced

4 March 2019. An international academic partnership has been announced by Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P), in Morocco, and two of the UK’s leading agricultural research institutions, Rothamsted Research and Cranfield University.

The partnership will be supported by OCP Group, which is one of the largest exporters of phosphate fertilisers in the world. The announcement comes on the back of growing relations between the UK and Morocco to strengthen collaboration in education, research and innovation fields.
The initial phase of the partnership will focus on the delivery of seven agricultural research projects and the creation of a Centre for Doctoral Training, supporting the development of the next generation of Moroccan scientists and engineers. Up to 20 Early Career Researchers in the agricultural sector will be supported both in Morocco and in the UK through the partnership.
“OCP, through its R and D programme and in close co-operation with the Mohamed Vi Polytechnic University, is developing fertilizers that are specific to the needs of African soils and crops, as well as locally-appropriate service models for African farmers to have reliable, affordable access to these inputs and related products. This vital partnership with Rothamsted and Cranfield University will support the acceleration of this strategy to help African farmers become not only more productive, but also more prosperous.” Hicham El Habti, Secretary General of Mohammed VI Polytechnic University
“This partnership brings together the very best in UK plant and soil science with the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University, an institution with the very highest of entrepreneurial and scientific ambitions for Morocco and wider Africa. As a university that prides itself on our international outlook, we are delighted to be bringing Cranfield’s globally-recognised expertise to support the development of African agricultural research.” Leon A. Terry, Director of Environment and Agrifood at Cranfield University
“The development of sustainable agriculture across Morocco, and Africa as a whole, is vital to the continent’s food security and economic growth. The challenges are immense, but by nurturing the talent and enthusiasm of young scientists, I am confident that there can be bright future both for Africa’s famers and its environment. By combining the cutting-edge expertise of Rothamsted and Cranfield, with the drive and vison of UM6P, we can play a major role in delivering this and we are excited about contributing our unique expertise.” Achim Doberman, Director and Chief Executive of Rothamsted Research
Upcoming event:
19 - 21 February 2020. Cape Town, South Africa. The 11th annual Argus Africa Fertilizer conference 

Integrate TAAT Into National Agric Programmes

9-10 April 2019. Cotonou, Benin. Experts at a Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) meeting have called for its integration into national agricultural development projects in order to reach millions of farmers across Africa. The meeting brought together ministerial level government representatives and experts from AfDB, IITA and the other implementing agencies of the TAAT programme.

The main objective of the programme is to improve the business of agriculture across Africa by raising agricultural productivity, mitigating risks and promoting diversification and processing in 18 agricultural value chains within eight Priority Intervention Areas (PIA).
An innovative combination of technical expertise, finance and political will to transform African agriculture. The transformation of agriculture will not be possible without the help of adapted technologies. To achieve our objectives, we must be able to wisely combine political will, favorable economic and institutional environment, adequate infrastructure, better access to the market and preservation of Africa’s natural resources,” Dr Ken Dashiell, Deputy Director General, IITA
The programme is implemented by IITA in close partnership with other CGIAR Centers and specialized technical centers like AATF, IFDC, FARA, national agricultural research and extension systems and private sector partners.

A statement issued after a two-day high-level meeting urged development partners including World Bank, International Fund for Agriculture (IFAD) and European Union to support TAAT activities.

Related:

WRENmedia Steph Celebrates Vesta Nunoo in Honour of 2019 International Women’s Day

"Since I started at WRENmedia, International Women’s Day has taken on a whole new meaning. It is now a key event in the calendar to celebrate women leaders across the globe that we have featured in Spore magazine, as well as an opportunity for us to explore what more needs to be done to promote gender equality in the agricultural sector. With this in mind, I thought it would be a good occasion to look back at some of the inspiring women that I have been fortunate enough to work with over the last two years."

Vesta Nunoo, Grants Manager, FARA Photo by Benjamin Abugri, FARA
Vesta Nunoo, Grant Manager, the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA)

"Sophie and I had the delight of meeting Vesta when we traveled to Benin in October 2017 to report on the capitalisation workshop of the Platform for African-European Partnership on Agricultural Research for Development (PAEPARD). In a room full of mostly male researchers, Vesta radiated confidence and positive energy". 

She was particularly encouraging and supportive of our ideas for the policy brief that we were commissioned to write reflecting on the workshop’s outcomes, and we have continued to work with her on a number of other PAEPARD assignments.

As a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Ghana, and with a Master’s degree in Project Management, Vesta is justifiably self-assured in her role as Grant Manager for FARA. Through her work at the Forum, as well as in supporting the Ghana Research and Advocacy Program and Sub-Saharan African Challenge programme, Vesta has facilitated agricultural research projects that have the potential to transform African agriculture and boost the food security of the continent’s most vulnerable populations.


In Benin, for example – where 23% of the population is estimated to be nutritionally insecure – PAEPARD and FARA have supported a project that trained at least 1,500 women soybean processors to develop stabilized soy milk. Stabilizing the milk has extended shelf life from just 24 hours to up to 6 months and, with access to improved processing technologies, the women’s soy milk production has tripled. The increased production and shelf life of the soy milk has not only boosted the protein intake of 11,000 families in southern Benin, but also benefited the women processors’ incomes."

Source: https://www.wrenmedia.co.uk/blog/a-shout-out-to-some-of-the-women-who-have-inspired-me

Monday, March 11, 2019

Hidden Hunger and the transformation of food systems

"Businesses are everywhere in the food system.
We have to engage with them and figure out how
we make these enormous resources
flows...more nutritious"
@l_haddad #hiddenhunger @UniHohenheim
27 February - 1 March 2019. Stuttgart, Germany. The "Congress Hidden Hunger and the transformation of food systems: How to combat the double burden of malnutrition? " provided a platform for global interactions of members belonging to the scientific community, representatives from politics, government and the media as well as members of civil society organizations, advocacy groups and private and public sector bodies.
  • Keynote Presentations Click here for download
  • Free Presentations Click here for download
  • Poster Presentations Click here for download

Introduction
  • Stefan Schmitz (Deputy Director-General and Commissioner for the “One World – No Hunger” Initiative, German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ): Welcome speech One World – No Hunger
  • Anna Onyango (Agriculture Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries of Kenya): How agricultural policies can contribute to better nutrition – The Kenyan case
  • Hans-Christoph Eeden, German Federal Agency for Agriculture and Food (BLE) “Fit for life” – German perspectives on how to tackle the double burden of malnutrition 
  • Fatiha Terki: Unlocking the hidden hunger crises: the power of public-private partnership 
  • John McDermott: Hidden hunger and the transformation of food systems: How to combat the double burden of malnutrition?
THE ROLE OF THE PRIVATE SECTOR IN THE PREVENTION OF THE DOUBLE BURDEN
  • Manfred Eggersdorfer: Perspectives on energy / nutrient density – too high and too low
  • Patrick Coppens: The role of supplementation to bridge dietary gaps
  • Els de Groene: From individual nutrients to sustainable nutrition
  • Patrick Detzel: Market driven food fortification to address dietary needs