It has taken a crisis for the importance of market infrastructure to be acknowledged

After years of persuading development agencies not to concentrate on the production side but spread their resources along supply chains all the way to the market, eMKambo has finally been vindicated.  COVID-19 has provided the Ahaa! moment for policy makers and development agencies on the importance of building infrastructure at African mass markets. If a Read more about It has taken a crisis for the importance of market infrastructure to be acknowledged[…]

Strategies for cushioning African informal economies against COVID19

Cushioning informal traders and vendors against the impact of COVID-19 is a very noble idea in developing countries. However the devil is in the implementation details. For instance African informal economies function more like ecosystems than a collection of disconnected traders and vendors. That is why before introducing social cash grants, the most important first Read more about Strategies for cushioning African informal economies against COVID19[…]

COVID19 – an opportunity for decision makers to know how African food markets function

African countries are called less industrialized economies for genuine reasons. If the majority of people in a country depend on more than 80 agricultural commodities and less than 10 can be turned into processed products, such a country is obviously less industrialized. For instance in Zimbabwe only maize meal, flour, sugar, wheat flour, magarine, tomato Read more about COVID19 – an opportunity for decision makers to know how African food markets function[…]

Clear benefits of containerization in African Agriculture

Post-harvest handling and storage of agriculture commodities remains the biggest challenge for the majority of African smallholders. Unfortunately most solutions being pushed are designed to get surplus commodities moving quickly from farming areas to the market and consumers. Solutions that enable farmers to hold onto their commodities and sell profitably rather than be pushed to Read more about Clear benefits of containerization in African Agriculture[…]

Using infrastructure to unlock the value of African agriculture

African agriculture requires banks with a vision to invest in infrastructure which can be used by farmers to anchor production in ways that simplify loan repayment. For instance Vision 2030 should have financial products that speak to a 10 year horizon. Financing inputs is just like providing consumer loans which do not have a growth Read more about Using infrastructure to unlock the value of African agriculture[…]

Which sources of information can transform African Agriculture

All over the world, information sources are no longer just important for journalists. African policy makers who really want to transform their agro-based economies cannot afford to remain silent about their sources of information. There is emerging consensus to the effect that information from academic institutions, private companies and development agencies is not enough for Read more about Which sources of information can transform African Agriculture[…]

Ten guiding principles for yoking infrastructure and ICTs in African Agriculture

There has been a general tendency by developing countries to cherry-pick and deploy some components of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in the agriculture sector. Combining infrastructure and ICTs could play a more catalytic role than just using ICTs for promoting extension services. If African countries are going to produce sufficient agricultural commodities, how can Read more about Ten guiding principles for yoking infrastructure and ICTs in African Agriculture[…]

Building pathways for commercializing research findings and knowledge

Days of doing research for its own sake are numbered in developing countries. The same applies to an enduring tendency by researchers to be satisfied with publishing research findings into journals. Many African researchers are waking up to the fact that academic excellence will not solve teething challenges like mass poverty and unemployment among graduates. Read more about Building pathways for commercializing research findings and knowledge[…]

Why policy makers should know the difference between information and news

By confusing information with News, most African countries have neglected vital information that is neither News nor statistics but more important. What is ignored is information that continuously informs and guides socio-economic activities in rural communities. A lot of research has been done in many African communities by several institutions like NGOs, the private sector Read more about Why policy makers should know the difference between information and news[…]

Why are pathways for uplifting rural communities still missing

In spite of presence in rural areas by African governments and development agencies there are still no meaningful pathways for uplifting communities out of poverty.  A recent trend has seen development agencies working through some kind of consortia in one rural district or county but still after three or four years when the consortia is Read more about Why are pathways for uplifting rural communities still missing[…]