Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Thursday, November 22, 2018

International Symposium on Agricultural Innovation for Family Farmers


21-23 November 2018. Rome, Italy. The International Symposium on Agricultural Innovation for Family Farmers: Unlocking the potential of agricultural innovation to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals”.

See the Concept Note.
#agInnovation @_MarcoGualtieri said:
Investments in #foodtech and #AgTech are growing,
but we are just at the beginning of the beginning.
And this is the good news!
@FAO @FAOKnowledge @FAOnews
  • Innovation is the central driving force which will transform food systems, lift family farmers out of poverty and help the world to achieve food security, sustainable agriculture and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  • The Symposium provide inspiration for innovation actors and decision-makers and, among other things, will celebrate inspiring success stories of innovators, acting as catalyst for boosting partnerships as well as public and private investments to foster and scale up agricultural innovation.
Objectives of the Symposium
  1. Serve as a global knowledge and partnership platform to better understand the potential of innovation in agriculture to address the SDGs, with a special focus on supporting smallholder and family farmers; 
  2. Increase understanding of the drivers of innovation and the main constraints; 
  3. Propose processes, pathways and interventions needed to unlock the potential of innovation in agriculture and scaling up inclusive innovations; 
  4. Celebrate inspiring success stories of innovation and innovators in sustainable agriculture; 
  5. Act as a catalyst for boosting partnerships as well as public and private investments to foster and scale up agricultural innovation.


Extracts of the programme: Webcasts: 
21 November 2018.
@AnnWatersBayer (left)

Farmers need the capacity to innovate 
and link up with sources of information
  • Keynote address 1: The future of family farming: A young farmer’s perspective
  • Parallel session 1: Putting family farmers at the center of innovation
    Panel 1: The key role of family farmers
    Panel 2: The critical role of the enabling environment
  • Parallel session 2: Strengthening research, education and bridging institutions to accelerate innovation
    Panel 1: Addressing research priorities: Transforming research and education for farmer-centred innovation
    Panel 2: Strengthening and reforming bridging institutions to accelerate innovation
  • Reporting from parallel sessions 1 & 2
22 November 2018.
Irene Annor-Frempong @FARA gives her thoughts 
on building effective Agricultural Innovations System
  • Keynote address 2 Empowering innovation
  • Parallel session 3 Building effective agriculture innovation systems and empowering its actors
    Panel 1: Building effective agriculture innovation systems
    Panel 2: Strengthening capacities to innovate
  • Parallel session 4 Reaching millions of family farmers: Scaling up successful innovation
    Panel 1: Replicating and scaling up successful innovation
    Panel 2: Bridging the knowledge gap: Learning from others
  • Parallel session 5 Driving successful innovation through effective decision-making and innovative partnerships
    Panel 1: Driving successful innovation through effective decision-making
    Panel 2: Building on innovative partnerships
  • Parallel session 6 Increasing access to markets and engaging the private sector to accelerate innovation
    Panel 1: Increasing access to markets and targeted strategic investments
    Panel 2: Engaging the private sector to accelerate agricultural innovation
  • Neven Mimica, European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development
  • Josefa Leonel Correia Sacko, Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, African Union Commission
  • Senzeni Zokwana , Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries , South Africa
  • Augustine Auga Maeue, Minister of Agriculture and Livestock Development, Solomon Islands 
  • Gilberto Correia Carvalho Silva, Minister of Agriculture and Environment, Cabo Verde
  • Manfred Alberto Melgar Padilla, Vice-Minister of Food and Nutrition Security, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food, Guatemala
  • Alessandra Pesce, Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Agricultural Food, Forestry and Tourism Policies, Italy
  • José Graziano da Silva, Director-General, FAO will give the closing remarks to this Segment and close the Symposium.



The following 20 success stories were exhibited in the Innovation Fair

  1. The use of hydroponics to help Sahrawi refugees in Western Algeria grow fresh green animal fodder locally and strengthen food security in the community. Nina Schröder, Co-Founder H₂Grow/Scale-up Enablement Manager, United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), WFP Innovation Accelerator, Munich, Germany
  2. Drought tolerant maize varieties in Zimbabwe. Cosmos Magorokosho, International Wheat and Maize Improvement Centre (CIMMYT) Southern Africa Regional Office, Harare, Zimbabwe
  3. Climate-smart villages (CSV) approach for scaling up and out appropriate climate-smart agriculture options in West Africa. Mathieu Ouedraogo, Senior Scientist, CGIAR Research programme on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics, West and Central Africa (ICRISAT-WCA), Bamako, Mali
  4. eLocust3: a revolutionary transboundary plant pest early warning system in Africa and Asia. Mehdi Ghaemian, Desert Locust Information Officer, Head of the Desert Locus Programme, Plant Protection Organization, Tehran, Iran
  5. Successful area-wide eradication of the Mediterranean fruit fly in the Dominican Republic. Gregory Marte-Diaz, Agricultural Sector Coordinator at the National Competitiveness Council; former Project Manager, Programa Moscamed, Ministry of Agriculture, Dominican Republic
  6. Use of the Mountain Partnership Products (MPP) participatory certification and labelling scheme to promoting mountain biodiversity and improve local economies and livelihoods in Nepal. Umesh Lama, Chairman/Executive Director, Organic World and Fair Future, Pvt Ltd, Kareshwor-1250 Marga, Kathmandu, Nepal
  7. Agroecology at the heart of local development: The example of the Agro-ecological School Farm of Kaydara in Senegal. Gora Ndiaye, Director, Association Panafricaine Jardins d’Afrique, Mbour, Senegal
  8. Allanblackia seed oil: from a wild-harvested seed to your morning toast in Tanzania. Fidelis Rutatina, Managing Director, Novel Development Tanzania Ltd, Morogoro, Tanzania.
  9. The Rythu Bandhu Insurance scheme in India. C. Partha Sarathi, Agriculture Production Commissioner & Secretary to Government Agriculture & Cooperation (Horticulture & Sericulture) Department, Government of Telangana, India
  10. Use of climate and weather information for artisanal fisher folk to manage extreme weather risks at sea in Senegal. Issa Ouedraogo, Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) Programme West Africa, International Crops Research for the Semi-Arid Tropics West and Central Africa (ICRISAT-WCA) Regional Office, Dakar, Senegal
  11. Use of wooden low-cost greenhouses for high quality vegetable production in El Salvador. Boris Corpeño, Technical Advisor, Consultant for Hortaliceros de Cuscatlán Association and Cooperative, El Salvador
  12. Introduction of semi-roofed shelters to protect camelids from extreme weather and climate events in Bolivia. Severo Choque, President of Quri Tama Camelides Producers' Association, Yuruna, Santiago de Andamarca, Bolivia
  13. Introducing and promoting a new high iron bean variety in Guatemala. Leonel Osorio Quiñónez, President, Cooperativa Atescatel, Guatemala
  14. Going to the Virtual Farmers’ Market in Zambia: An app-based e-commerce platform where farmers’ surplus and buyers’ demand for crops are advertised and traded. Ahnna Gudmunds, Project Coordinator Zambia, Virtual Farmers Market / Programme Officer, Digital Development, United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), Purchase for Progress (P4P), Rome, Italy
  15. Use of blockchain technology in the coffee value chain for small scale coffee producers in Ethiopia. Sander Govers, Business Development and International Retail Manager, Moyee Coffee, The Netherlands
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  16. Using agribusiness incubation programme for youth employment in Nigeria. Evelyn Ohanwusi, Head, Youth in Agribusiness Office, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, Ibadan, Nigeria
  17. Zanzibar Seaweed Cluster Initiative: Bioeconomy for an increased resilience of women farmers in Tanzania. Flower Ezekiel Msuya, Senior Researcher/Consultant Facilitator of the Zanzibar Seaweed Cluster Initiative, University of Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar, Tanzania
  18. Use of the Burkina Faso Bio Participatory Guarantee System label for organic farming. Clémence Lankouande, Coordinator, National Council for Organic Farming, Burkina Faso
  19. FAPP: fighting plant pests and diseases in Uganda. Siraji Nazirini, Software developer, Hansu Mobile Innovation, Mbale, Uganda
  20. AfriRice Agrobusiness: Environmentally conscious farm equipment that automates manual tasks for rice growers Steve Hoda, Founder, AfriRice Agrobusiness, Benin

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