Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

ReSAKSS Annual Conference

18–20 October, 2016. Accra, Ghana. The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), in partnership with the African Union Commission (AUC), convened the 2016 ReSAKSS Annual Conference to promote review and dialogue on the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) implementation agenda among state and nonstate actors.

This year’s conference centered on nutrition, an area that has gained increasing attention and momentum across Africa. Recent AUC initiatives include:
  • the CAADP Nutrition Initiative, 
  • the Africa Region Nutrition Strategy 2015–2025 (ARNS 2015–2025), 
  • the Africa Task Force on Food and Nutrition Development, the African Union (AU) 2014–2017 Strategic Plan, 
  • the African Union Agenda 2063, 
  • and the 2014 Malabo Declaration. 
  • In addition, 37 out of 57 countries involved in the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement are African. 
  • The CAADP process has included efforts by countries—led by the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
    (FAO), and other development partners—to mainstream nutrition in national agriculture and food security investment plans. 
  • And country-level SUN and CAADP teams are expected to work collaboratively toward improved nutrition.
The conference allowed policymakers, researchers, advocacy groups, farmers’ organizations, the private sector, development partners, and other key stakeholders from within and outside of Africa to
  • discuss issues and recommendations raised in the 2015 ATOR—the official CAADP monitoring and evaluation report;
  • review progress in implementing the CAADP agenda and in particular progress toward achieving key CAADP goals and targets as well as in creating capacities and adopting effective modalities for evidence-based policy planning and implementation; and
  • evaluate progress and challenges in establishing and operationalizing effective country Strategic Analysis and Knowledge Support System (SAKSS) platforms and mutual accountability platforms through agriculture joint sector reviews (JSRs).
Keynote Address: Scaling Up Nutrition Action for Africa: Where Are We and What Challenges Need To Be Addressed To Accelerate Momentum, Lawrence Haddad, Executive Director, Global Alliance for Nutrition (GAIN), United Kingdom.

The Role of Mycotoxin Contamination on Nutrition: The Aflatoxin Story. Amare Ayalew, Program Manager, Partnership for Aflatoxin Control in Africa (PACA), Ethiopia

Role of Biofortification as Part of a More Diverse Diet in Africa: Progress, Challenges and Opportunities, Bho Mudyahoto, Senior Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation Specialist, Harvest Plus, Uganda.

ACHIEVING A NUTRITIONREVOLUTION FORAFRICA:The Road to Healthier Dietsand Optimal Nutrition. (October 2016, 282 pages)
  • The 2015 Annual Trends and Outlook Report (ATOR) examines the current status of nutrition in Africa, including progress in meeting Malabo nutrition targets, and emphasizes the importance of dietary quality and diversity. It also addresses how the agricultural sector can ensure that food systems deliver more nutritious and nutrient dense foods.
  • The ATOR emphasizes the importance of strengthening human and institutional capacities for mainstreaming nutrition, wider implementation of programs and coordinating policies and programs across sectors more efficiently. Including nutrition indicators in national monitoring, and evaluation systems is essential for holding governments accountable.
The Global Nutrition Report (June 2016, 180 pages) is an independent and comprehensive annual review of the state of the world’s nutrition.

It is a multipartner initiative that holds a mirror up to our successes and failures at meeting intergovernmental nutrition targets. It documents progress on commitments made on the global stage, and it recommends actions to accelerate that progress. The Global Nutrition Report aims to be a beacon, providing examples of change and identifying opportunities for action. This year’s report focuses on the theme of making—and measuring— SMART commitments to nutrition and identifying what it will take to end malnutrition in all its forms by 2030.

The 2016 Report was funded through the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition & Health, the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, the European Commission, the Governments of Canada, Germany, and the Netherlands, Irish Aid, UK Department for International Development (DFID), US Agency for International Development (USAID), and 1,000 Days.

The Report is delivered by an Independent Expert Group and guided at a strategic level by aStakeholder Group, whose members also reviewed the Report. The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) oversees the production and dissemination of the Report, with the support of a virtual Secretariat.

6 October 2016. Washington DC. Keynote Address by Kanayo Nwanze (IFAD) at the IFPRI Special Event, "Accelerating Progress in Ending Hunger and Undernutrition" 

In the keynote address, Kanayo Nwanze, President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), highlighted the “cruel paradox” that many families that feed the world on small farms are the ones who go hungry. He raised key questions for national governments and development organizations to consider as they seek to scale up interventions to end hunger: “Are we paying enough attention to smallholders? Are we engaging them in finding solutions to end hunger and undernutrition? And if not, why not?” 

Noting that support for smallholders lays the foundation for a world free from hunger, Nwanze proposed four value propositions for accelerating progress toward this goal: 
  1. Build inclusive “public-private-producer partnerships” that involve smallholders; 
  2. Invest in rural infrastructure including storage facilities, roads, energy, and social services; 
  3. Create inclusive policies from community to national levels to enable vulnerable groups to participate; 
  4. Improve measurement of results to account not just for higher yields but also for reduced poverty, improved nutrition, and healthy ecosystems.

2nd African Youth Conference on Climate Change

10 - 13 October 2016. 128 youth delegates across Africa attended the 2nd African Youth Conference on Climate Change (AfriYOCC) @ the Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Nairobi-Kenya. Theme; "Making Climate Finance Work for African Youth

The conference focused on the following thematic areas;
  • Youth in Agribusiness
  • Climate Change and Development in Africa
  • Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security
  • Green Economy and Technology
  • Climate Justice and Human Rights
  • Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction
The African Youth Initiative on Climate Change (AYICC) is a continental youth network that was conceived in 2006 in Nairobi Kenya, during the Conference of Youth held just before the UNFCCC COP12. This initiative has continued to link, and share knowledge, ideas, experiences, skills and strategies on youth action around the continent on climate change, its mitigation and adaptation and sustainable development. 

In 2009, AYICC was granted observer status to the African Minister’s Conference on Environment (AMCEN). AYICC has been identified by most youth to have the potential to provide a platform for them to address their regional challenges at such international gatherings as the Conference of Parties of UNFCCC, CBD, UNCSD, among others. AYICC currently operates in over 45 African countries with over 20,000 members.

Africa Food Security Conference

12-13 October 2016. Nairobi, Kenya. This 2 day conference aimed at building a refocused program and establishing monitoring mechanisms to address the needs of a dynamic food security program.

Poverty, climate change, food price hikes, water scarcity, land rights, fairer agricultural policies - all of these issues and more were addressed to ensure that infinitely better management of natural and financial resources and more strategic investment are implemented. The Exhibition which ran alongside the event showcased latest technologies and other innovative products and solutions

Extracts of the programme:
The Role of Corporate and Private Sector: 
  • Dr. Moses Makayoto, Head Kirdi Enterprises/Chief Research Scientist, Kenya Industrial Research and Development Institute: Drivers of innovation, investment and growth for in this industry
  • Lois Ndiba, Chief Executive Officer, Food Safety International: Food wastage management- corporate responsibilities
  • James Mwangi Ndiritu, Area Manager Food Security, Vestergaard Frandsen EA: PPP opportunities for domestic agriculture
  • Nickly Kipkorir, Head Technical, LAGRAN Group: Organic Farming? A fad or a business reality
Innovative Financing - Promoting access to finance in agriculture
This session focused on government, private sector and third sector / development assistance
interventions relevant to the BCI Enabling Mechanism which seeks to promote equitable access to responsible finance for farmers.
  • Zak Syengo, Head of Marketing & Corporate Affairs, Rafiki Microfinance Bank
  • Elizabeth Obanda, Senior Regional Programme Officer, Rural Development, Aga Khan Foundation (East Africa)
  • John Ndung’u, Chief Operations Officer, Hand in Hand Eastern Africa
  • Geoffrey Musyoki Kioko, Agricultural Loans Specialist, Oiko Credit Kenya
Agricultural Extension and Sustaining Practices
This session accessed application of scientific research and new knowledge to agricultural practices through farmer's education and rural development programs on environmental health, economic profitability, and social and economic equity.
  • Lawrence Kiguro, Associate Director, Livelihoods & Resilience, World Vision Kenya
  • Anja Weber, Country Manager, Soil Care Limited
  • James Mwololo, Head of Agriculture, Farm Africa
  • Mila Sell, Programme Coordinator, Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke)

Borlaug Dialogue International Symposium

12-14 October 2016. Des Moines, Iowa. The title of the 2016 Borlaug Dialogue was "Let Food Be Thy Medicine," a quote attributed to Hippocrates approximately 2,400 years ago. It focused on the development and implementation of biofortification, breeding critical vitamins and micronutrients into staple crops, thereby dramatically reducing "hidden hunger" for millions.

The 2016 World Food Prize honored the impact of biofortified crops in positively impacting the
health and nutrition of people around the world.

Extract of the side events programme:

10-11 October 2016. The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Agency for International Development hosted an International Food Security Conference. The conference, brought together public- and private-sector partners to discuss issues and challenges related to delivering programs to alleviate hunger and promote long-term food security throughout the world.

Agriculture Innovations for Improved Diets
  • Dr. Howarth Bouis, Program Director, HarvestPlus;
  • Dr. Barry Pittendrigh, Michigan State University;
  • Jennie Lane, Land O’Lakes;
  • Paul Walubita Kachapulula, Borlaug LEAP Fellow
SPS and Food Safety: Building Capacity to Support Trade
  • Dr. Osei Yeboah, PhD., Professor and Director, L. C. Cooper, Jr. International Trade Center North Carolina A&T State University
  • Ms. Sharon Bomer Lauritsen, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Agricultural Affairs and Commodity Policy
  • Dr. Washington Otieno, PhD., Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI)
  • Mr. Jim Hershey, American Soybean Association, World Initiative for Soy in Human Health
  • Daniel Orellana, FAS/OCBD/TSCBD
11 October 2016. The Seed Security for Food Security forum focused on public breeding initiatives aimed at smallholders farmers through the CGIAR system, as well as legal aspects of germplasm movement and security through the international treaty landscape.

The focus of this side event was to promote the adoption of advanced science and technological innovations to transform agricultural development in Africa throughout the value chain. There are many investment opportunities in the agricultural production sector and food processing industries that can ensure that Africa doesn’t just market raw materials, but also has the capacity to produce a diversified range of quality food products currently in demand on the global market. To have a successful transformation of Africa, there is need for bringing everyone, i.e. all stakeholders across the value chain to work together through the development of partnerships (PPPs).

The, the Association of African Agricultural Professionals in the Diaspora (AAAPD) partnered for this event with the Partnership to Cut Hunger and Poverty in Africa, the Regional Universities Forum (RUFORUM)  , The International Potato Centre (CIP), J.R. Simplot Company and other stakeholders and brought together key African Leaders, the Private Sector, African, American and European Universities to identify key opportunities in Africa to foster the development of strategic partnerships that will help to transform Africa’s agricultural industry.
  • Hon. M. Peter McPherson, former Administrator - USAID and President, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities
  • H.E Joyce Banda, former President of Malawi 
  • Her Excellency Ameenah Gruib-Fakim, President of Mauritius 
  • H.E Akinwumi A. Adesina, President of the African Development Bank 
  • Hon. Professor Ruth Oniang’o, Professor of Food Science and Nutrition, Chief Executive Secretary Rural Outreach Africa Program
  • Barbara Wells, Director General International Potato Centre (to be confirmed)
  • Haven Baker, Vice President of Simplot Plant Sciences at J.R Simplot company
  • Prof. Karim Maredia, Professor and Program Director, World Technology Access Program (WorldTAP), Entomology Dept, Michigan State University (to be confirmed)
  • Dr. Moses Osiru, Executive Secretary at RUFORUM Secretariat (to be confirmed)
  • Dr. Mima Nedelcovych, President and CEO, Initiative for Global Development
  • Dr. Dianah R. Ngonyama, President –AAAPD; J.R Simplot Company
12 October 2016. Reducing Postharvest Losses in the Developing World: Opportunities and Challenges. The ADM Institute for the Prevention of Postharvest Loss is pleased hosted a panel discussion for global postharvest loss and food security issues.

13 October 2016. Crop Intensification in the Tropics
The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Soybean Value Chain Research (Soybean Innovation Lab, SIL) is USAID’s only comprehensive program dedicated to soybean technical knowledge and innovation.
  • Dr. Robert Easter, President Emeritus, University of Illinois
  • Dr. Rob Bertram, Chief Scientist, Bureau for Food Security, USAID
  • Dr. Michael Robinson, Chief Science Advisor, Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture 
2016 Global Agricultural Productivity Report®
October 2016, 72 pages
12 October 2016. 2016 Global Agricultural Productivity Report® (GAP Report®) Release Event.

Dr. Margaret Zeigler, Executive Director of GHI, was joined by a panel of experts to discuss challenges and opportunities for greater global agricultural productivity growth and the need for investment and innovation in order to meet the world’s demand for food, feed, fuel, and fiber in 2050.

The panel discussed five key policies priorities that support productive sustainable agricultural growth, transform agriculture to mitigate climate change and help farmers of all scales remain competitive throughout the ups and downs of the agricultural business cycle.
  • Dr. Keith Fuglie, Economist, Resource and Rural Economics Division. USDA Economic Research Service
  • Ambassador Patricia Haslach, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs, U.S. Department of State
  • Ms. Bonnie McClafferty, Director of Agriculture for Nutrition Programs, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN)
  • Mr. Ben Pratt, Vice President, Corporate Public Affairs, The Mosaic Company & GHI Board Chair

Human and Institutional Capacity Building in African Agricultural Development
  • Her Excellency Dr. Joyce Banda – Former President of the Republic of Malawi and Founder of the Joyce Banda Foundation
  • Gebisa Ejeta – 2009 World Food Prize Laureate
  • Berhanu Abegaz – Executive Director, African Academy of Sciences
  • Martin Kropff – Director General, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), 
  • Juergen Voegele – Senior Director, Agriculture Global Practice, The World Bank Group

Luncheon Address H. E. Akinwumi A. Adesina – President, African Development Bank Group.

Africa Fertilizer Agribusiness Conference

10-12 October 2016. Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania. The Africa Fertilizer Agribusiness Conference was a collaboration between CRU  (a British business intelligence company and the world’s leading authority on fertilizer markets, in collaboration ) and The African Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP).

This event focused on the role of fertilizers within African agribusiness and how the African
agricultural industry can work with international partners to strengthen and improve its agricultural output. Over 300 international fertilizer and agribusiness executives and regional government representatives from over 45 different countries

Delegates benefited from three days of dedicated networking opportunities and a comprehensive
programme of high level presentations covering key market trends, project updates and supply and demand forecasts. Drawing on CRU’s technical event experience, the Africa Fertilizer Agribusiness conference also featured an extensive exhibition of the the world’s cutting edge fertilizer and agribusiness technologies and services.
“Fertilizers are a food production lifeline and a thriving fertilizer industry means more productive farmers and better livelihoods. The conference is being convened at a time of renewed global interest in agriculture development as expressed in the agreement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the ZERO Hunger campaign all of which serve to strengthen the resolve to banish hunger and poverty in Africa by investing in the right inputs to ensure smallholder farmers are productive and profitable. The challenge of food production in Africa is a clarion call for coordinated efforts to transform African agriculture and hence accelerate the continent’s economic growth, secure jobs and improve livelihoods. 
Africa needs to plug its ‘soil nutrient deficit’ through a holistic approach to increase fertilizer supply and use in order to enhance household and national food production. Fertilizers play a critical role in securing better productivity for African farmers but in combination with other inputs such better seeds and agronomic practices. Africa’s soils are generally poor and manure alone cannot restore their productivity,” said Mkandawire. “Private sector participation is key to building and sustaining a strong fertilizer supply chain in Africa and this conference will explore opportunities to boost investment and trade while also boosting agriculture growth.”  Richard Mkandawire, AFAP Vice-President. 
Side Event – AFAP/IFA: Side Event on Product Security: This side event raised the awareness of the fertilizer value chain and national authorities of the risk of misuse of fertilizers and discus and evaluate potential for possible next steps to reduce the risk
  • Misuse of fertilizers for producing improvised explosive devices: global overview and ways to mitigate security risks, Jan Chys, Director, Yara and Convenor, IFA Product Security Working Group
  • Recent fertilizer-related security measures implemented in the North-East of Nigeria; Alhaji Ibrahim Shehu Birma, Chairman of the Board, Superphosphate Fertilizer Company (SFC), Nigeria

Monday, October 24, 2016

Good Nutrition: Perspectives for the 21st Century

Eggersdorfer M, Kraemer K, Cordaro JB, Fanzo J, Gibney M, Kennedy E, Labrique A, Steffen J eds (2016) Good Nutrition: Perspectives for the 21st Century. Basel, New York, Karger, 2016

This book provides the latest perspectives on the nutrition challenges that are now common to all societies worldwide. It argues that the case for good nutrition for all people, in all parts of the globe and throughout the entire life-cycle, is growing stronger. The book is written with the general reader in mind, and offers insights and opinions from some of the world’s most influential and respected experts in the field. Divided into five sections, each chapter is fully self-contained and offers recommendations for further reading. Graphics and case studies from a wide variety of sources enrich the flow of the narrative.

‘Good Nutrition: Perspectives for the 21st Century’, builds on DSM’s first publication, ‘The Road to Good Nutrition’, which was awarded first prize in the health and social care category of the British Medical Association (BMA) annual medical book awards.

The digital version of this book is only downloadable by chapters
Key Definitions / Executive Summary
Section 1: A World Hungry for Nutrition
Section 2: Nutrition, Health and Economic Status
Section 3: Sustainable Food Systems
Section 4: From Science to Solutions
Section 5: Transforming the Nutrition Landscape

20 October 2016. Rome. A Side Event at the UN Committee of World Food Security presented the book “Good Nutrition: Perspectives for the 21st Century” and encouraged a dialogue between CFS stakeholders – specifically governments, UN agencies, civil society and private sector – dedicated to work related to food security and nutrition at global, national and regional levels. The event provided important input, not only to those already dedicated to working in the nutrition space, but also to stakeholder new to this area, who are seeking to learn more about the challenges and solutions for nutrition, and what CFS’s role and their own might be working within multi-stakeholder partnerships.
  • Keynote, Lawrence Haddad, Executive Director GAIN
  • Manfred Eggersdorfer, University Medical Centre Groningen and DSM,
  • Klaus Kraemer, Sight and Life Foundation,
  • Hilal Elver, UN Special Rapporteur on Right to Food, 
  • Lauren Landis, UN World Food Programme,
  • Jessica Fanzo, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health,
  • John B. Codaro, Global Food and Nutrition Business Advisor,
  • Hinrich Thölken, German Ambassador to Rome-based UN Agencies,
  • Jonathan Steffen, Jonathan Steffen Limited

Monday, October 17, 2016

Awesome Oceans and overfishing, plastic waste, acidification, species extinction

Published on 31 Augustus 2016. About 70% of our planet is covered by oceans and seas: large, full of life and mysterious. They are a source of food, way of transportation, oxygen producer, and more. But the sea is in danger: overfishing, plastic waste, acidification, species extinction.
"We need to better understand the marine life and deal with it in a sustainable way, because our life is closely linked to the sea. If it is sick, we cannot stay healthy."
This animated short-video (8 minutes) is about the fascination of oceans and the problems they are facing, such as loss of biodiversity, acidification and plastic waste.

Friday, October 14, 2016

2nd Africa Climate Smart Agriculture Alliance

11-13 October, 2016. Nairobi, Kenya. The NEPAD Agency convened the 2nd Africa Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) Alliance under the auspices of the Government of Kenya through the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries. The theme for the meeting was: “From Agreement to Action: Implementing African INDCs for Growth and Resilience in Agriculture”.

At the 31st African Union Summit (Malabo, 2014), Heads of State and Government emphasized the importance of the agriculture and climate change by endorsing the NEPAD programme on agriculture and climate change. An integral part of the programme is theAfrican Climate-Smart Agriculture Alliance which is to support the AU Vision to have at least 25 million smallholder households practicing CSA by 2025 in line with CAADP’s 2015-25 Results Framework. This Alliance was officially launched in Ethiopia in May 2015 as a mechanism for dialogue, agenda-setting, resource alignment and harmonisation in the efforts to support the scaling-up of CSA in Africa.

Climate Smart Agriculture contributes to the achievement of the new sustainable development goals (SDG) and aims to address food and nutrition security and climate challenges looking at the three dimensions of sustainability (economic, social and environmental).

The 4th Afraca Central banks forum

13 - 14 October 2016. Accra, Ghana. The 4TH AFRACA Central Banks Forum 2016 is a key platform convening all Central Banks, Financial institutions and stakeholders to deliberate on policies and interventions in rural and agricultural finance in Africa.

A lot of advances have been made in the rural and agricultural finance space since the last AFRACA Central Banks Forum held in 2011 and 2014.

Guided by the theme - ‘Taking stock of gains and misses in extension of financial services to Rural and Agricultural communities in Africa’ the Forum is therefore meant to acknowledge, reflect and take stock of the developments that have since taken place-including policy issues, innovations as
well as new partnerships that could be explored, aimed at developing an inclusive financial sector in Africa.

The 5th World Congress on Agriculture and Rural Finance
Nov 24 - Nov 25 · Radison Blue Hotel · Dakar, Senegal

7-8 November 2016. Boosting agriculture through innovative public-private lending partnerships, the Blending4Ag conference will examine the largely untapped potential for using blending tools to leverage finance for agriculture, and particularly to unlock more private funding to develop agribusiness in the smallholder sector.

Focusing on practical aspects of blending finance for agriculture, the conference will seek to contribute to the knowledge base on how this can best be done. The event, which will bring together key stakeholders from agriculture, finance, public and private sectors, will investigate various blending schemes that are currently in operation and assess some of the principle challenges to developing this approach to galvanise better funding of small-scale agriculture in the future.

2ND PACA Partnership Platform Meeting

11-13 October 2016. The 2nd PACA Partnership Platform Meeting (PPM) brought together senior
government officials from African Union Member States (government ministries from agriculture, trade and health), Regional Economic Community (REC) representatives, farmer organizations, consumer associations, large and small business sector representatives, civil society, development partners, donor communities, the African Union (AU).

The meeting aimed to achieve the following objectives:
  • Track progress of implementing the specific actions identified at the 1st PPM.
  • Assess efforts of the last two years (2014-2016) of implementing PACA activities at continental, regional and national levels, in order to capture the attained successes and recorded challenges, for the development of a clear roadmap for the next two years of implementation.
  • Celebrate the numerous programs and activities being implemented by partners in managing aflatoxin, particularly the active leadership of key agents of change and aflatoxin mitigation champions active on the continent.
  • Endorse planned approaches for implementing PACA Phase II, 2016-2019.
  • Strengthen instruments and mechanisms for accountability, M and E and reporting for PACA stakeholders.
Hon. Minister of Trade, Industry & Cooperative of Uganda
For a full description of the PACA PPM 2016, see following documents:
Extract of the programme
11 October 2016CTA Roundtable on Engaging the Private Sector for Aflatoxin:
The Roundtable gathered over 35 participants, amongst which were CEOs and programme managers from groundnut, grain, chili, coffee producers, millers, traders and processors, input and equipment suppliers, technical and financial service providers, and development partners from across African and beyond. Representatives from AFRI-Nut - Malawi, Cereal Millers' Association - Kenya, CTA, GrainPro – East Africa, Meds For Kids - Haiti, Nestlé – West Africa, PACA, USAID, Women's organisations in Uganda and Zimbabwe, were in attendance, amongst others.

In the upcoming weeks, CTA and PACA will release the joint report of the 2015 study on "Improving the Evidence Base on Aflatoxin Contamination and Exposure in Africa: Strengthening the Agriculture Nutrition Nexus".

During the side event, some of the private sector-led initiatives to contain aflatoxins that had resulted in achieving growth in market share, and meeting consumer demands while increasing brand and quality recognition were:
  • Self–regulation and the adoption of internal standards, which are, in some cases, stricter than national and international norms;
  • Private sector-driven model: provision of input credits and higher prices for quality produce to farmers;
  • Adoption of a farm to fork approach (train and support and test through the chain) -train farmers in good agricultural practices e.g. using farmer field school methodology and conduct aflatoxin testing on site (Romer Agrastrip, Mobile Assay, traceability protocol);
  • Establishing joint ventures with major research facilities (e.g. BeCA-ILRI Hub, PMIL, universities for compliance testing, sampling; APTECA for proficiency testing;)
  • Forming alliances with other private sector actors and producer groups;
  • Investing in capacity building of staff and infrastructural development.
The following priority actions were compiled at the side event and were conveyed to the plenary session of the PACA Partnership Platform Meeting on 13th October as key elements of a private sector engagement strategy:
  • Mobilize matching grant schemes for increasing access to technologies and services to support innovation
  • Build alliances with consumer groups to create awareness and demand for safe quality foods without creating panic
  • Build alliances with farmer groups/associations/cooperatives for scaling-up the adoption of good agricultural practices and collective sourcing, as incentives for premium prices
  • Lobby government for incentives to support innovation in the food and feed value chains and updating and improving implementation of aflatoxin regulation governing the informal and commercial sectors.
Download the final report of the side event

FOOD 2030: Research & Innovation for Tomorrow's Nutrition & Food Systems

13 October 2016. Brussels. The official conference of FOOD 2030 saw the participation of high level officials, industry, entrepreneurs, investors, policy makers, and civil society organisations.

The European Commission presented its FOOD 2030 research and innovation policy stocktaking exercise to be followed by four prospective discussion panels, each exploring how R and I policy should contribute to shaping tomorrow's sustainable food systems, with respect to healthy and sustainable diets, climate resilience and circularity of food systems, user-centric innovation, new business models and investment.

  • The FOOD 2030 high level event provided a platform for dialogue that seeked to build on the political momentum for a coherent research and
    innovation policy framework for Food and Nutrition Security
  • The conference was an important step towards boosting future investment in research and innovation in support of impactful nutrition and food systems research breakthroughs, market-creating and open innovation, open science and multi-actor engagement, building of capacities and skills; and strengthening global collaboration for improved research policy alignment.
  • FOOD 2030 explored what is needed to transform and future-proof our food systems to be sustainable, resilient, competitive, diverse, responsible and performant in their provision of accessible, healthy and sustainable food and diets for all. 
  • Furthermore, FOOD 2030 investigated how research and innovation systems can be scaled-up to better contribute to the above Food and Nutrition Security priorities.
In the video below you will find the keynote presentations of:
  • Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation
    He announced the single thematic Research and Innovation narrative built on a number of key Food and Nutrition Security priorities:
    NUTRITION for sustainable and healthy diets
    CLIMATE smart and environmentally sustainable food systems
    CIRCULARITY and resource efficiency of food systems
    INNOVATION and empowerment of communities
  • Phil Hogan, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development
  • Paul Bulcke, Chief Executive Officer, Nestlé S.A.
  • Mairead McGuinness, Vice-President of the European Parliament
For the rest of the programme click here

Example of innovative research
Tomato skins transformed into food packaging.
The BIOCOPAC Project has been funded under 7th FRAMEWORK PROGRAMME - Research for the benefit of SMEs (Grant Agreement No. FP7-SME-2011-286446). The Project has started the 1st of December of 2011 and lasted for 24 months.
  • The goal of the project was to develop a bio-lacquer for the protection of metal food packaging to meet the demand for sustainable production and for the safeguarding of consumer health, at the same time increasing the competitiveness of the metal cans industry, valorising the wastes produced by the preserved industry and reducing refuse. 
  • BIOCOPAC, making a better use of Europe's renewable agri-food resources, enables business to deliver green growth and environmental benefits.
  • The core of the research was the development of a natural lacquer obtained from industrial tomato processing by-products (skins), to be applied on the internal and external surfaces of cans for foodstuffs.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

FOODSECURE Final conference

12 October 2016. Brussels. Some 150 participants consisting of policy and decision makers on FNS in the European Commission, the EU and beyond, with representatives of the civil society, private sector and academia that have a stake in a global strategy for
FNS participated in a conference entitled “Policies that matter”.

This conference provided a policy and science
forum on Europe’s role in eliminating global
hunger and malnutrition. Reflecting the approach adopted throughout the project, in this final conference FOODSECURE researchers engaged with interested policy-makers and stakeholders during a one-day event to present, share and discuss their research results and findings as well as policy recommendations. an introduction to the project and the overall conceptual framework of the project for assessing and addressing FNS in an uncertain future and in anticipation of more volatile global agricultural markets.

Parallel session 1: “A policy agenda driven by novel evidence on the determinants of global food and nutrition security (FNS)”

Session 1A. Culture and socio-economic exclusion driving food and nutrition security in the EU and beyond
Session 1B. Linking empowerment, innovation and resilience – evidence from farm households
  • Linking empowerment, innovation and resilience – evidence from farm households by Nicolas Gerber (ZEF) and Martina Bozzola (IHEID)

    Take-home messages

    Message 1: Innovation and technology diffusion can be inclusive, but reaching the poor may require looking beyond traditional remedies to low investments in agricultural innovations at the farm level. Interventions on farmers’ aspirations may enhance the effectiveness of other policies targeting „external“ constraints. Aspiration-raising strategies could hence
    support innovation diffusion and creation, as well as FNS.

    Message 2: Key technological innovations such as improved seeds can increase the economic resilience of small farmers in the developing world, especially if these technologies prove tolerant to a wide range of conditions. Yet the adoption of improved seeds is itself negatively affected by climate shocks and therefore the intensity of diffusion remains sub-optimal. Institutional changes, and possibly even deeper structural changes, are required to correct this. For example, to support technology diffusion in improved seeds varieties is important not only to invest the development of such technology, but also in experimentation and use at the production (farmer) level.
Session 1C. Volatile agricultural commodity prices and instability along the food value chain
Parallel session 2: “How do future FNS challenges shape EU policy action in meeting global sustainability and hunger and nutrition goals?”

Session 2A. Inequality and inclusiveness: Long term scenarios and robust policy response
Session 2B. Environmental sustainability of the food system: Long term scenarios, robust policy responses and the 1.5°C warming
Policy panel: “EU policies and global FNS”
Science panel: “A helpful research and policy frame for global action and governance of FNS”
  • Introduction and moderator: Joachim von Braun (ZEF)
  • Panelists: John Bell (DG Research), Ousmane Badiane (IFPRI), Alan Matthews (University of Dublin), Willis Kosura (University of Nairobi), David Zilberman (UC Berkeley)
FOODSECURE – An interdisciplinary research project to explore the future of global food and nutrition security. 7th framework program, Collaborative Project. € 10.5 mln. March 2012 – 2017. 19 partners from 13 countries. Scientific Coordinator Joachim von Braun (ZEF, Center for Development Research, University of Bonn)

Publications (extract)
The effect of aspirations on agricultural innovations in rural Ethiopia
Author(s) Daniel Ayalew Mekonnen; Daniel Ayalew Mekonnen; Nicolas Gerber; Nicolas Gerber
This paper identifies the impacts of aspirations on the adoption of agricultural innovations in the context of rural Ethiopia. While most studies on agricultural innovations have focused on identifying observable and resource-related deprivations or ‘external’ constraints, a related stream of literature suggests that ‘internal’ constraints, such as the lack of aspirations, could reinforce external constraints and lead to self-sustaining poverty traps. Since both aspirations and the adoption of i...More

Transfer of Improved Varieties in Informal Markets and the Diffusion of Embedded Innovation: Legal Pluralism in Uganda
Author(s) Martina Bozzola, Tim Swanson, Helena Ting
Summary The authors used household level panel data to look at the diffusion of seed technology among Ugandan farmers. We present a simple target-input model to conceptualize the adoption decisions and management of a new technology in which the best use of inputs under the new technology is unknown and stochastic. In this framework, there is path dependency in the adoption process, since use and adoption are important indicators of the superior efficiency of new technology. Our analysis suggests that the adoptio...More

Work packages/research areas

Causes of hunger and poor diets

Stakeholder orientation on the future of hunger

Sustainable agriculture

Database on hunger: outcomes and drivers

Short term modelling

EU and national food security strategies and aid policies

Innovation for FNS

Long-term modelling

EU policies in support of food and nutrition security

Aid, trade and agriculture policies

Surveillance on and management of food crises

Pooling resources: Models and data