AAAE News Brief

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June 16, 2021 | No. 26
REGISTRATION OPEN: 31st Virtual ICAE Conference

The International Association of Agricultural Economists (IAAE) invites you to register for the 31st Virtual International Conference of Agricultural Economists (31st ICAE) that takes place from 17-31 August 2021. The conference, "Agriculture under the 4th Industrial Revolution", will feature over 560 Contributed Papers, 8 Plenaries, 39 Organised Symposia, and 27 Invited Sessions. Early-Bird registration is currently ongoing until June 30, 2021. REGISTER 

source: IAAE
Funding Opportunity: 2021 Call For Proposals

The Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP) Steering Committee has launched its sixth GAFSP Call for Proposals and is currently accepting proposals for grant funding for new (i) Country-led and (ii) Producer Organization-led projects in the context of the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic. This funding will support medium- to long-term COVID-19 response efforts for a more sustainable, inclusive, and resilient recovery of agriculture and food systems in a changing climate. The GAFSP Steering Committee expects to allocate an indicative amount of US$125 million to the 5-8 highest-ranked Country-led proposals, and approximately US$25 million in funding to 8-10 successful Producer Organization-led proposals. The Steering Committee intends to make allocation decisions at the end of 2021. Read more

source: GAFSP
What the budget holds for the agriculture sector in Kenya

Kenya’s second budget under the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic has prioritized a stimulus for economic recovery and the implementation of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s legacy projects. The agriculture sector, which has received a slightly bigger share of the budget, remains vital to the country’s economic recovery strategy. The sector contributes 34% to gross domestic product. It has also recorded a relatively stronger performance than other sectors of the economy that have been adversely affected by the pandemic. In 2020, widespread flooding damaged cropland and increased post-harvest losses. Also, desert locust infestations in arid and semi-arid areas destroyed about 175,000 hectares of crop and pastureland. This affected the livelihoods of nearly 164,000 households. Read more  

Making Chocolate can give Ghana a taste of prosperity

Ghana, the second-largest producer after Côte d’Ivoire, accounts for about one-fifth of the world’s cocoa bean exports. But of $130 billion in the global chocolate industry, less than $2 billion flows into Ghana. From poor infrastructure to lack of manufacturing and market know-how, obstacles are formidable but people have been making chocolate in Ghana for 20 years. Some domestic companies manufacture bars for Ghana’s growing domestic market, but many are not of high quality to appeal to European consumers. Two Ghanaian sisters run ’57 chocolate, one of the craftsmanship makers that produces small quantities of fine chocolate. Fairafric is a German and Ghanaian company trying to break the mold by producing large quantities of export quality chocolate. The company plans to build a $ 10 million plant north of the capital, Accra, to produce 50 million and 100 million bottles annually. This is still modest by the standards of automated European consignment manufacturers, and global brands could mass-produce ten times that amount. Ghana cannot yet compete on price with robotized western factories but made-in-Ghana chocolate does well in a premium market. Read more 

Investing in Green Infrastructure for African Cities

Africa is becoming more urbanised, with younger populations increasingly moving from rural areas to cities to find work. In September 2020, the World Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB) launched the City Climate Finance Gap Fund, which aims to support the green and climate-resilient development of cities in low- and middle-income countries. Through donor support, technical assistance, and targeted finance of at least $122m, the fund plans to unlock an estimated $5bn to help cities transform climate ambitions into finance-ready projects. The first round of technical assistance grants for nine cities were approved in early April, amounting to $1.8m in total. The selected African cities include Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo; Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; and Fez, Morocco. All of the three African pilot cities are particularly vulnerable to climate change. In the first round of funding, the cities will build their greenhouse gas inventory scenarios and develop a pipeline of green urban infrastructure investments. The team behind the Gap Fund hopes these city pilots will provide a blueprint on how to lower greenhouse gas emissions in cities and help them face climate change. Read more 

Incubators for agribusiness in dryland tropics

Small and medium agribusiness and agtech (agricultural technology) start-ups often struggle to grow due to a lack of access to resources, appropriate technologies, technical and management expertise, and market support. CGIAR researchers at ICRISAT in 2003 founded the Agri-Business Incubator (ABI-ICRISAT) program to address these challenges. By leveraging research expertise and aggregating the services of various actors in the agricultural sector, ABI-ICRISAT has managed to provide many innovative solutions to value-chain problems commonly faced by start-ups. Read more

source: World Bank
Multisectoral Food Security and Nutrition Project (UMFSNP)

In Uganda, subsistence farming by smallholders currently accounts for 96% of all farm production, a quarter of total GDP, employs over two-third of workers, and earns over 40% of household income. The primary focus of Ugandan agricultural policy has been on increasing productivity and commercialization of staple foods and cash crops to raise the income of farmers. At the same time, stunting affects one in three children (over 2.1 million children) in Uganda— higher than its immediate neighbors, some of whom have lower per capita income. Read more 

source: GAFSP
Nature-based solutions: Advancing innovative local practices for ecosystems restoration in Nigeria

Already the most populous country in Africa, Nigeria’s population is projected to rise at an annual rate of 2.6% over the next few decades, doubling its population to 400 million by 2060, and making it the third most highly populated country in the world. Such a dramatic increase, particularly in the commercial capital, Lagos, raises concerns about the inevitable strain on food systems, the impacts of a burgeoning population on carbon emissions, and added pressure on basic services such as energy, and water and sanitation systems. Accelerated climate change is also expected to contribute to more frequent floods, drought, and heatwaves, even as the conversion of forest for agriculture, urbanisation, and other land-use changes, contribute to biodiversity loss and water contamination, further weakening the resilience of Nigeria’s ecological zones. Read more 

source: Medium
From Farm Gate to Restaurant Plate: How a Team of Researchers is Tracking the Cost of Your Food

The journey food takes from a farm to your plate (or glass) is often long and winding. That pint of blueberries you bought at the grocery store may come from Chile or Mexico. The coffee beans and tea leaves you rely on for a morning boost of caffeine probably weren’t grown in your backyard. Even if you eat and cook with hyperlocal foods, chances are that every now and then you enjoy a meal out at a restaurant, which may or may not source ingredients as carefully. Every step of that journey—from a farmer planting a seed in the ground, to a worker stocking a shelf—contributes to what is known as the food value chain. Read more

Call for Paper Submissions

The African Farm Management Association (AFMA) invites interested farm management and agribusiness professionals and practitioners to submit papers for the forthcoming Congress planned from 21 - 25 November 2021, at Panari Hotel, Nairobi, Kenya. The Forum, "Commercialization of African Agriculture for Sustainable Development" will provide an avenue for farm and agribusiness specialists and other stakeholders in the public and private sectors for exchanging knowledge and experiences in an effort to reposition African agriculture in the global environment. Read more

source: AFMA
African Association of Agricultural Economists
c/o University of Nairobi, C.A.V.S, Upper Kabete Campus
Loresho Ridge Road, Nairobi, Kenya


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