Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Monday, March 30, 2015

Rice Science in Africa gets a new Director General

15 March 2015. Cotonou, Benin. Dr. Harold Roy-Macauley, new Director General of AfricaRice, doesn't want to just improve rice science for Africa, he wants to make the continent a world leader in it.

The rice sector in Africa is going to be “evidenced-based and therefore very solid and powerful,” he said. At a time when the developed world agonizes over the value of science, Africa sees an opportunity to grab a lot of market share by using science to improve their food production and become a next exporter, and then the rest of the world can play catch up.

“Rice is global and it is big business,” said Macauley,a Sierra Leonean national, in his first speech to the AfricaRice staff in Cotonou, Benin. “It is the white gold of the future. We at AfricaRice should consider ourselves fortunate to be in big business already”.

Roy-Macauley outlined his first priorities as:
  • Rendering partnerships more efficient around rice science and sector development
  • Strengthening capacity for rice science and sector development
  • Improving access of small-holders rice producers to markets
  • Reintegrating rice science in the policy agenda of countries
  • Increasing investments in rice science and sector development

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