Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

2015 African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF)

Middle: Dr. Agnes Kalibata, President,
Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa
Right: Mr. Hugh Scott, Director,
Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund
29 September - 2 October 2015. Lusaka, Zambia. This year’s African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) was themed: “Walking the Talk on Youth and Women: Bringing Inclusive Agricultural Markets to Life.” The event is livestreamed.

The event is being jointly organized by the AGRF Partners Group, the Government of Zambia and the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA).

The theme of the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF) held ahead of the 2015 African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) was ”Empowering the Private Sector to Boost Africa’s Green Revolution.” With almost US $250 million in financing from eight donor countries, AECF is instrumental to addressing the dearth of capital available to support fledgling African businesses—particularly small enterprises focused on various aspects of farming and food production.
The biggest need in agribusiness in Africa is investment, adding that AECF is in a certain sense laying the groundwork for investors from outside of Africa who are eager to capitalize on Africa’s growing market for food and agriculture products but unsure about where to put their money. Feeding Africa with processed tomatoes, sugar, bread, and milk and providing farmers with things like seeds and vaccines for chickens, it’s a huge business. We are really building a pipeline of investible companies for people who want to invest in African agribusinesses. Gem Argwings-Kodhek, the agribusiness adviser to AECF
AECF officials also used the event to release a report (69 pages) detailing how its portfolio of 160+ projects across Africa is having a significant impact on the lives of rural poor people by addressing some of the continent’s most urgent development challenges.
  • In 2014, the AECF portfolio reached an estimated 1.39 million households – equivalent to seven million people. 
  • In 2014 alone, projects funded by the AECF generated the equivalent of US $117 million in benefits for poor households; help provide over 5,000 jobs, and improved access to clean, sustainable energy for over 200,000 families.
  • More details are available in this unique report which have been brought to life in a presentation available for viewing / download here.

Extract of the programme
Women in Agribusiness Forum
The Forum was an opportunity for women agriculture/ agribusiness owners and those with programs that support women to connect with peers and industry leaders, expand their networks, learn about capacity development resources and discuss key points (including desired outcomes) to be shared during the AGRF. 

Launch of 2015 “African Agricultural Status Report”
Overview of Report, Commentary and Feedback Keynote: Dr. Lindiwe Majele Sibanda, CEO and Head of Mission, Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN).

The Africa Progress Report 2015 explains the bold steps that leaders globally and in Africa must take to achieve this vision. Above all, the report shows that the global climate moment is also Africa’s moment – Africa’s moment to lead the world.


Theme: The Catalysts for Increased Inclusion in African Agriculture and Agribusiness 
  • Tumusiime Rhoda Peace, Commissioner, Rural Economy and Agriculture, African Union 
  • Dr. Theo de Jager, President, Pan African Farmers’ Organization 
  • Mr. Lucas Messo, CEO, Agriculture Finance Corporation 
  • Dr. Chiji Ojukwu, Director, Agriculture and Agroindustry, African Dev. Bank 
  • Ms. Monica Musonda, Founder and CEO, Java Foods
Theme: Improved Inputs and Increased Mechanization - Toward Modern Farming and Agribusiness Development on the Continent
  • Dr. Hans Balyamujura, CEO, Zed Group 
  • Dr. Florence Wambugu, Founder and CEO, Africa Harvest Biotech Foundation International Case Studies: 
  • Dr. Rob Smith, Senior Vice-President and Manager EAME, AGCO 
  • Mr. Dyborn Chibonga, CEO, Nat’l. Smallholder Farmers’ Assoc. of Malawi 
  • Ms. Elly Mwale, CEO, Glymo Enterprises 
  • Mr. Kofi Adomakoh, Director, Project and Export Development Finance, African Export-Import Bank Discussants 
  • Dr. Prasun Kumar Das, Project Manager, IFAD-APRACA Project on Rural Finance, Asia-Pacific and Agricultural Credit Association 
  • Mr. Justin Rakotoarisaona, Secretary General, African Seed Trade Association 
  • Mr. Ousmane Badiane, Director, Africa, International Food Policy Research Institute 
  • Dr. Jemimah Njuki, Senior Program Officer, International Development Research Centre
A Pillar of Modern Farming - Agriculture Infrastructure and Mechanization Models
  • Ms. Ida Naserwa, Managing Director, Bukanga Lonzo Agribusiness Park, Democratic Republic of Cong 
  • Mr. Nuradin Osman, Director Africa & Middle East, AGCO 
  • Dr. Mbette Mshindo Msolla, Country ManagerTanzania African Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership Discussants: 
  • Mr. Abraham Sarfo, Program Manager, Agriculture Vocational and Technical Education (ATVET), CAADP 
  • Mr. Emerson Zhou, Executive Director, Beira Corridor 
  • Ms. Eva Zansanze, Manager, Cenergy Global Limited 
  • Hon. Ms. Luisa Meque, Vice-Minister of Agriculture and National Food Security, Republic of Mozambique
Theme: The Keys to Effectively Financing Youth and Women Owned Enterprises in Africa 
  • Ms. Tacko Ndiaye, Senior Officer for Gender, Equality and Rural Development, FAO Keynote Address: Mr. Nelson Tangwena, CIO, Homestrings
  • Ms. Lindsay Wallace, Deputy Director, Financial Inclusion, MasterCard Foundation 
  • Ms. Betty Kibaara, Project Coordinator, Rockefeller Foundation 
  • Mr. Saleh Gashua, Secretary General, African Rural and Agricultural Credit Association 
  • Mr. Chris Nikoi, Regional Director, Bureau for Southern Africa, United Nations - World Food Programme Case Studies: Investment Opportunities 
  • Mr. Ben Zulu, MD, Zamibia Seed Company Limited 
  • Dr. Gertrude Mampwe, CEO, Getma Herbal Health 
  • Mr. Best Dorah, Manager -Strategy and International Cooperation, African Export-Import Bank Discussants 
  • Mr. Godfrey Chinoera, CEO, Zimbabwe Agricultural Development Trust 
  • Ms. Elizabeth Ssendiwala, Regional Gender & Youth Coordinator, East & Southern Africa Region, International Fund for Agricultural Development 
  • Mr. Scott Overdyke, Senior Program and Planning Manager, Root Capital 
  • Hon. Mr. Beda Machar, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry, Cooperatives and Rural Development
The AGRF was established in 2010, following a three year series of African Green Revolution Conferences (AGRC) held in Oslo, Norway from 2006–2008. Moving the venue to Africa anchored the African ownership of this global initiative. The AGRF seeks to bring together African Heads of State, Ministers, farmers, private agribusiness firms, financial institutions, NGOs, civil society, scientists, and other stakeholders to discuss and develop concrete investment plans for achieving the green revolution in Africa. The Forum focuses on promoting investments and policy support for driving agricultural productivity and income growth for African farmers in an environmentally sustainable way.
  • The AGRF has grown in scope and focus to become a “platform of platforms” on the development of African agriculture-as-enterprise. 
  • The first AGRF was held in Accra, Ghana in September, 2010. The Forum was Chaired by H.E. Kofi A. Annan, former UN Secretary General and hosted by H.E. John Atta Mills, President of Ghana. 
  • The second AGRF was held in 2012, in Arusha, Tanzania and was hosted by President of the United Republic of Tanzania, H. E. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete. 
  • In 2013, the AGRF moved to the home of the Maputo Declaration on African Agriculture, and was held in Maputo, Mozambique. 
  • The fourth AGRF was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and was hosted by the Ethiopian Government and the African Union, who convened the meeting at the new African Union Headquarters Conference Center. More than 1000 participants attended 2014 AGRF – making it the largest agriculture focused event of 2014. The 2014 AGRF was significant as it unpacked the continental theme – the African Union’s “Year of Agriculture and Food Security”.
Since 2013, the AGRF has adopted a dual mode, with alternate years hosting a minor and major AGRF respectively. The minor AGRF, held every odd year, features an-invite only specific-issue focus “Forum” unpacked at length by about 300 delegates; while the major AGRF, held every even year, will feature a broader agenda, with presentations on results of achievements in key areas and host upwards of 800 delegates

23 September 2015. SNV, in partnership with The MasterCard Foundation, has launched a 5 year multi-million project to provide rural out-of-school youth in Rwanda, Tanzania and Mozambique with vital employment skills through training in business development and financial literacy, as well as technical and life skills. OYE matches youth with improved employability skills with markets and coaches them towards (self-) employment and small enterprise development.
The Opportunities for Youth Employment (OYE) team 
in SNV Rwanda hosted SNV’s Chief Executive Officer, 
Allert van den Ham on 9th September on a field visit 
to assess the impact of SNV’s employment related 
work at the grassroots.
  • The OYE project facilitates internships, on-the-job-training opportunities, and placements in private and public enterprises in the renewable energy sector in Rwanda as well as two others countries in Sub Sahara—Tanzania and Mozambique.
  • The programme also promotes the establishment of new youth-led enterprises by connecting youth to financial institutions and ensuring that young entrepreneurs benefit from continued business coaching and peer-to-peer learning.
  • Since the start of the programme in 2014, more than 8,000 youth have been trained in theoretical and practical aspects of the programme in the three countries. Already, the programme generated employment opportunities for 800 youth, and led to the establishment of over 60 new youth led enterprises. In Rwanda, over the entire project period, at least 4,000 young people are expected to be trained in domestic biogas, improved cooking stoves, briquette production and solar technologies, of which 2,500 will be employed with a total of 70 youth-led renewable energy enterprises.

Agricultural Research for Development Conference

23 - 24 September 2015. Uppsala, Sweden. This conference was a forum for balanced and science-based discussions about the ways forward, and on how multidisciplinary agricultural sciences can contribute to the discussion on the Post 2015 Development Agenda.

This was a two-day event for researchers and professionals who work with and/or interested in agriculture for development. PhD students, senior scientists, experts from social, political, soils, crops, natural resources and animal science, economy, forestry, horticulture, veterinary medicine etc. participated.

Keynote speakers of the conference included John McDermot (Director for CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health, IFPRI); Kostas Stamoulis, Director ESA, FAO, Rome; Margaret Kroma, Assistant Director General – Partnerships & Impact, World Agroforestry Centre, ICRAF; Christel Cederberg (Professor at the Department of Energy and Environment, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden); and Jim Sumberg (Research fellow, Institute of Development Studies – IDS. University of Sussex, UK).

Download the Conference Booklet

Extract ofthe program:
Transforming subsistence farming into commercial enterprises: The changing face of eastern and southern African agriculture. Session leaders: Ivar Virgin, SEI; Matthew Fielding, SIANI.
  • Commercialisation of Agriculture among Smallholder Farmers Catherine Komugisha Tindiwensi, Makerere University Business School, Uganda 
  • Food Security, Water and Sanitation for Improved Wellbeing of Smallholder Farmers in East and Southern Africa Ngolia Kimanzu, International Development, The Salvation Army, Sweden & Latvia Territory 
  • New Products from Traditional Grains to Create a Market and Improve Food Security. Mats Stading, Structure and Material Design, SP Food and Bioscience, Sweden. 
  • Rapid Ex-ante Environmental Impact Assessment for Livestock Value chains. Ylva Ran, Stockholm Environment Institute(SEI). 
  • From Communal to Private: The Case of Changing Land Tenure and its Implications for Agricultural Practices in West Pokot, Kenya Laura Saxer, School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden 
  • The Impact of Large Scale Land Acquisition on the Right to Adequate Food of Small Scale Farmers in Lipokela, Tanzania. Atenchong Talleh Nkoboul, Institute of Social Sciences in Agriculture, University of Hohenheim, Germany 
  • Is Land Tenure Conversion Indispensable for Agricultural Transformation in Sub-Saharan Africa? Lasse Krantz, Unit of Human Geography, University of Gothenburg, Sweden 
  • Land Use Consolidation in Rwanda: The Experiences of Small-scale Farmers in Musanze District. Emmanuel Muyombano. Unit of Human Geography, University of Gothenburg, Sweden 
  • Large-scale Land Acquisitions and their Implications for Commercialization of Small-farms. Atakilte Beyene, The Nordic Africa Institute, Sweden
Sustainable intensification in agriculture
  • Research-for-Development (R4D) platforms - a multi-stakeholder initiative for integrated farming towards sustainable intensification. Per Hillbur, Malmö University, IITA/Africa 
  • Risisng Biochar as an opportunity for agriculture in small-holder farming systems in Kenya – a win-win-win situation? Cecilia Sundberg, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU 
  • Converting organic waste into valuable animal protein – Business opportunities for improved organic waste management. Cecilia Lalander, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU 
  • Efficiency in small-scale urban dairy production has potential to increase in Uganda. Renee Båge, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU
  • Next Generation Breeding of East African Highland Bananas – The Main Staple of East African Great Lakes. Rodomiro Octavio Ortiz Rios, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU 
  • The role of civil society in assessment of GM crops in Africa (Kenya, South Africa, and Uganda). Ksenia Gerasimova, University of Cambridge 
  • Opportunities and Challenges of ‘Climate Smart Agriculture’ Activities: A Critical Review of Empirical Evidence. Linus Karlsson, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU
Improving access to markets and developing value chains. Session leader: Kostas Karantininis, SLU
  • Willingness to pay for organic food in Africa. Kostas Karantininis, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU 
  • Cooperatives and Farm Gate Prices for Agricultural. Jens Rommel, Leibniz Center for Agricultural Landscape Research. 
  • Farmland investment in Africa: What’s the deal? Luca di Corato, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU 
  • Choice of Marketing Channels in the Kenyan Domestic Organic Market. Leah Murimi, University of Nairobi 
  • Value chain governance and its influence on integration: Evidences from the malt-barley value chain in Ethiopia. Mulugeta Watabaji, Ghent University 
  • A model for Prototype Testing, Up-scaling and Commercialization of New Stress tolerant Canning Bean varieties in Eastern Africa. Paul Kimani, University of Nairobi

Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition 7th International Forum

21 - 24 September 2015. Milan, Italy. Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition 7th International Forum.
This is an event which, since 2009, has proposed to promote debates on global topics linked to food, as well as encourage awareness and generate sound proposals for the future of the planet.

The Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition (BCFN) Young Earth Solutions (YES) finalists’ projects were presented at the forum, which was hosted within Expo Milano 2015.

The Mbororo are a minority ethnic group in Cameroon with a predominantly semi-nomadic lifestyle making them food insecure. Particularly vulnerable are women who are resource poor and lack access to food physically and economically. This project aims to employ an innovative upland farming approach in establishing an economically viable, eco-friendly gardening system for the Mbororo women; this will be reinforced with the value chain concept. Collective action would ensure higher bargaining power and reduced transaction costs. Higher incomes accruing to the women would improve their economic situation and consequently, their access to food.

The 11th African Dairy Conference and Exhibition in Kenya

23-25 September 2015. Nairobi. The three day conference saw a convergence of 120 local and foreign firms which consisted of 500 delegates from 42 countries.

It was an opportunity for Kenya to exhibit the steps it has taken to have its small scale farmers make a multi billion industry based on milk production. According to Eastern and Southern African Dairy Association (ESADA) who were the organisers, the conference also offered networking opportunities for industry players such as farmers, heads of co-operatives and manufacturers of equipment among others. The conference got more farmers to come together and form Co-operatives to enable farmers process milk directly instead of transporting and storing it as they wait processing.
“Kenya produces five billion litres of milk but only 55 percent to processors. The rest is sold at throw-away away prices to middlemen who sell them from door to door hence affecting the quality of milk,” Chief Executive Officer of ESADA Peter Ngaruiya.
The conference will also give Co-operatives a chance to experience the importance of cooling plants which will be showcased at the conference, which is hoped will lure them into buy the equipment.


Linking African Agri-Business Incubators with Finland

7-11 September 2015. Helsinki, Finland. International Business Incubation, Co-creation and Innovation

This Event was organised by Häme University of Applied Sciences, School of Bio-economy and FARA. The visit was fully financed by the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) and co-organised by Impact Iglu, Makery, ThinkAfrica, GOInternational, Shalin, UniPID​, LUKE (FoodAfrica) , FIBREPRO.
in Agriculture.

Profiles of the Delegates Profiles of the Incubators and Networks​
Extract of the programme
The Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) and African Agribusiness Incubation Network (AAIN) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK), Finland at the just concluded program on Linking African Agri-Business Incubators with the Finnish Social Enterprise and Innovation Ecosystems which until recently have concentrated on capacity building on forestry education institutions, innovative extension methodology and bioenergy.

The MoU states that partners are expected to explore different avenues of collaboration within the agriculture value chain from research and development technology transfer to improving the teaching and learning processes in agribusiness incubation.

In addition to understanding the HAMK innovative ways of encouraging entrepreneurship, the team visited different incubators including the Aalto Start up Center and the Design Factory to benchmark the startup ecosystem in Finland and to engage with innovative start-ups with solutions relevant to Africa.
The MOU will permit HAMK to increase its professional expertise and promote the opportunities for doing business with Small and Medium-Scale Enterprises from Finland to Africa. In exchange, some of the new businesses and start-ups from the incubators will target to provide outlets and marketing network for Finnish SMEs and vice versa and allows for more deepening and enlargement of the work that HAMK has been doing in Africa, which until recently have concentrated on capacity building on forestry education institutions, innovative extension methodology and bioenergy. Mr Ari Mikkola, Dean of HAMK School of Bioeconomy
The African Agribusiness Incubator Network (AAIN) was established by FARA to support the business development within the continental framework. AAIN is a result of the FARA-UniBRAIN program which ​currently hosts 80 incubators, members and partners under AAIN in 54 African countries. Under UniBRAIN, the incubators have collectively commercialized over 75 Agribusiness technologies, created thousands of jobs and produced over 200 incubates. The research networks have supported over 137 SMEs to startup and expanded businesses along selected commodity value chains, while creating business networks of about 24,000 value chain actors engaged in agribusiness.

Southern Africa Peanut Value Chain Meeting in Malawi

28-29 September 2015. Lilongwe, Malawi. Over 50 project partners including researchers, students, and private sector actors from the target countries, Malawi, Mozambique, and Zambia, plus collaborators from the United States and the United Kingdom attended the meeting.

Initial findings and updates from the ongoing projects that span the value chain were presented to improve multidisciplinary and regional cooperation and impact during the completion of the project.

Visit the website for more information about the Southern Africa Peanut Value Chain Intervention project.

Monday, September 28, 2015

1st continental Agri-Business Incubation Conference

Starting small is one inevitable. 
But staying small is inexcusable 
~ Prof. C. Kwesiga
28 -30 September 2015. Kenyatta International Convention Center (KICC), Nairobi, Kenya. The African Agribusiness Incubator Network (AAIN) has organised the 1st continental Agri-Business Incubation Conference & Expo in Africa, 2015.

This conference aims to create awareness about the opportunities that are available in agribusiness incubation and agribusiness sector for start-ups, SMEs and established agribusiness ventures.

Conference Themes
  • Agribusiness Incubation for inclusive development in Africa
  • Successful business modules for agribusiness incubation
  • Agro-Technologies for commercialisation/new business prospects
  • Gender mainstreaming in agribusiness incubation
  • Enabling African Agribusiness ecosystem
  • Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) & Technology Commercialization
  • Agro Value chain and market devpt for agribusiness incubation
  • Fuelling agribusiness through agriculture value chain finance
  • Youth engagement and capacity building for sustainable agribusiness in Africa
29/09/2015 PAEPARD side event.
PAEPARD showcased the multi-stakeholder innovation partnerships it has been facilitating, especially the Users’ Led Process (ULP) in which non-research stakeholders are leading some consortia towards the engagement of key stakeholders in the ARD processes.

Since 2010, PAEPARD has facilitated the creation of 19 African-European multi-stakeholder consortia to which 5 ULPs have been added in the end of 2011 as follows:

1- Extensive Livestock value chain in Eastern Africa with Specific focus on Kenya and Uganda. 
2- Urban horticulture value chain in Central Africa with specific focus on Congo Brazzaville, DR Congo & Cameroon. PROPAC.
Patrice Sewade of Sojagnon
3- Rice value chain in West-Africa with specific focus on Benin, Burkina Faso and Mali. ROPPA.
4- Aflatoxin in groundnut value chain in Zambia & Malawi. FANRPAN.
5- Adding value to mango non-food uses in West Africa with specific focus on Burkina-Faso, Côte d’Ivoire & Senegal. COLEACP.

The AAIN conference in general and side event in particular offers an opportunity to profile the project in general and ULP approach in particular.
SOJAGNON-NGO And ProSAM consortium of Benin 
Exhibition of soybean products.

  • To profile PAEPARD II project in general and the ULP of EAFF in particular; 
  • To discuss and share lessons learnt from PAEPARD and ULP with participants 
  • To discuss issues related to funding the multi-stakeholder partnerships programs: at global, regional and national levels

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Eight new projects on Food & Business in Africa

24 September 2015. Eight projects received a grant under the Food and Business Applied Research Fund. The awarded ARF research proposals are the result of the third round of the second call for proposals.

The new ARF-projects will start in the next few months and will take up to three years. All research teams are led by a practitioner organisation from one of the fifteen partner countries of Dutch development cooperation. Other team members are Dutch or LMIC research or higher education organisations and, in some cases, also other local enterprises. The budget of ARF-projects varies between 50,000 and 300,000 euros, depending on the project duration and excluding co-funding from consortium partners.

Awarded projects
  1. Mr S. Akbar (Bangladesh Institute of ICT in Development), 'Ground cover app to drive an irrigation scheduling service in the delta region of Bangladesh'
  2. Mr P.W. Beekman (Resiliência Moçambique), 'Unravelling the potential of Farmer led Irrigation Development in the BAGC, Mozambique'
  3. Ms V. Fumey Nassah (Resource Management Support Centre), 'Improving smallholders' food and income security by introducing non-timber forest products in reforestation schemes and tree-crop farms: A collaborative learning process in Ghana'
  4. Mr P. Kamalingin (Oxfam Novib), 'Cassava Applied Research for Food Security in Northern Uganda'
  5. K.D. Katamba (Makerere University Business School), 'Strengthening agribusiness Ethics, Quality Standards & ICT usage in Uganda's value chains? '
  6. Mr G. Nyang’'ori (Wageningen University & Research Center), 'Innovations for Sustainab and profitable Intensification of Smallholde Dairy in Kenya'
  7. Prof. G.W. Otim-Nape (Africa Innovations Institute), 'Enhancing Rice Markets in Uganda through Smart Micronutrient Fertilization'
  8. Mr M. Regassa Beyene (World Vision Ethiopia), 'Farmer-led Agroforestry Innovation in Ethiopia: Improving livelihoods and food security by utilising Acacia saligna'
In about a week, the project summaries will be published.

Informing Food and Nutrition Security Policy and Practice

21-25 September 2015. Dakar, Senegal. Workshop to determine and agree on entry points for strengthening the agriculture-nutrition nexus in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries.

This workshop was organised by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) and in collaboration with the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) Agency, the Partnership for Aflatoxin Control (PACA) and the West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development (CORAF/WECARD).

Lessons were shared from a number of CTA-commissioned case studies in Benin, Burundi, Cameroon, Fiji, Mali, Trinidad and Tobago, Togo and other countries as well as from a continent-wide systematic review of aflatoxin contamination of food commodities in Africa.

The majority of the CTA commissioned rapid scans and country case studies were coordinated by universities which are often left out of food and nutrition security discussions, planning and programme implementation. So far for this year, CTA has commissioned 18 ACP rapid scans on the agriculture-nutrition nexus, in addition to the 10 country case studies on the food and nutrition security situation which were commissioned in 2014. This networking event will add to the evidence base that CTA is building along with its partners, including the university community.

This knowledge will subsequently inform key continental, regional and national policy processes including the update of the Framework for African Food Security (FAFS), one of the pillars of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) as well as the PACA initiative and the CORAF/WECARD Strategic Plan.

Story from the field: The Citrus consortium of Ghana molt to three Innovation Platforms

EC reviewers' Field visit on 22nd September 2015
22 September 2015. Kumasi, Ghana. Strategic Review of the EU support to CAADP pillar IV institutions. PAEPARD organised a field visit for two EC reviewers at a citrus farm that uses best practices related to the PAEPARD supported project: Control of Angular leaf spot of citrus in Ghana

In June 2011 the Platform for African-European Partnerships in Agricultural Research for Development (PAEPARD) opened a call for the submission of concept notes. The Plant Protection and Regulatory Services Directorate (PPRSD) of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture together with University of Ghana, Pinora (a private company involved in fruit processing), the Citrus Growers
and Marketing Association of Ghana and the Instituto Valencia no de Investigaciones Agrarian, Spain submitted a concept note on Angular Leaf Spot disease of citrus which was selected by the coordination of PAEPARD.

The field visit to the citrus farm 
in Mankranso in August 2014
The consortium then, with the facilitation of PAEPARD, organized an inception workshop in Accra (13-17 February 2012) to develop a strong partnership and design together a framework for engagement in response to targeted calls for proposals.

Since then the consortium has been participating to write-shops organized by PAEPARD with the aim of submitting proposals and gain funds for consortium activities. Unfortunately none of the submissions to external (international) funding opportunities was successful. But a synergy was realised between the SSA CP and PAEPARD.

The synergy between the Sub-Saharan Challenge Program (SSA CP) and PAEPARD
  • The SSA CP is a FARA program funded by the European Commission through IFAD. The program has specialized in Integrated Agricultural Research Development (IAR4D) with the Integrated Innovation Platform (IP) approach where researchers, private sector including banks, NGOs, farmers create/form a forum to reflect and invent solutions to their challenges. 
  • SSA CP has facilitated the creation of IPs across the continent. Through PAEPARD they entered in contact with the Ghana citrus association. After discussion, two members (a researcher and a farmer) of the Citrus consortium were sent to Rwanda to learn the experience of IP. They have developed a proposal that got support from FARA under the SSSA CP funding for a total amount of 100,000 USD. 
  • A big training on IP management involving more than 30 members of the citrus producers association and researchers was organized in Kumasi in August 2014. A field visit was organised and the Mankranso IP was officially launched in the presence of the District Chief Officer, two members of the Parliament of Ghana and many other dignitaries. 
  • The Angular leaf spot disease symptom 
    in Mankranso (Ghana)
  • The IP involves all citrus producers from Ashanti Region. Later the same ceremony was in Kade (120Km from Accra) for Eastern Region citrus producers and Assin Foso (173km from Accra) for Central Region citrus producers. 
Outcomes from the Innovation Platform (IP)
  • Involvement of the policy makers. Two members of the Parliament of Ghana are members of the Mankranso IP. In one field visit organized by PAEPARD, they convinced the chair of the Agriculture sub-committee to work along with them. He was surprised to see that many farms were sold to the local mining companies. But the mining activities don’t last for long time and can’t sustain farmer livelihoods as the citrus activity does. Going back to Accra the issue of support to citrus famers was presented to the parliament. The member of Parliament said that citrus producers should be supported as the cocoa producers. 
  • It is expected that the current momentum created by the IP will 
    increase in the support of the citrus industry by the Ministry of Food and Agriculture. Also the IP expects members of the Parliament to enforce the law of spraying for all citrus producers because if a neighbor doesn’t spray his farm it is a source of contamination. The spraying should be mandatory to all producers and sanctions should be taken from those who do not comply. 
  • The control of the Angular Leaf Spot. The Angular Leaf Spot disease is managed through the use of a chemical spray that have been tested in other countries according to the EURGAP (European Good Agricultural Practices) and the Global GAP. These are Carbendazim and Mancozeb. The spray and other good practices (weeding the farm) has led to a big reduction of the losses of fruits.
  • The good understanding between the Private Sector and farmers. The fact that the two processing companies are sitting in the IP meetings has brought good atmosphere between the agribusiness and the farmers. In the past there were many misunderstanding between the two buyers and the farmers because they did not have a forum of discussion. But since the IP was created, everything is discussed in the IP and they agree on which type of fruits the farmers should harvest. Also the negotiation on the prices has been facilitated considerably by the IP.