Southern Africa

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Articles

Impact Stories

Coping with climate change in Southern Africa

By the time CTA’s regional flagship project for Southern Africa comes to an end in 2020, around 140,000 small-scale farmers in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Malawi will have adopted a range of climate-smart strategies to help them cope with drought and erratic weather patterns. About 75,000 farmers are benefiting from the bundle of climate-smart agricultural solutions at the end of the first year of implementation.

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Impact story

Since becoming a farmer in 2001, Phineas Muyabi from Chibombo District in Zambia has struggled to produce enough food for his family to eat. Droughts have destroyed his crops and, as a result, his family has had to rely upon food aid. This year, however, Muyabi is benefiting from CTA’s regional flagship project for Southern Africa, ‘Scaling up Climate Smart Agricultural Solutions for Cereal and Livestock Farmers’.

Impact story

A Botswanan start-up is breaking the barriers to digital technologies for rural smallholder farmers. Brastorne Enterprises, a winner of CTA’s 2016 Pitch AgriHack competition, operates a mobile platform called mAgri to improve farmers’ access to information, markets and finance.

Impact story

A project known as MUIIS (Market-led, User-owned ICT4Ag-enabled Information Services), led by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), links farmers to satellite-based services that help them to increase crop yields. Tips and instructions sent to mobile devices get as specific as ‘spread fertilizer between 5 pm and 7 pm’ or ‘winds expected at 3 pm’. Something farmers say have increased crop yields and contributed to food security.

Blog articles

Harnessing synergies of crop-livestock integration for climate-smart agriculture

Joyce Mulila-Mitti
by Joyce Mulila-Mitti

Integrated crop-livestock systems that provide synergies towards more resilient climate-smart agricultural production systems are possible despite the recognised competition between crops and livestock enterprises. To make this work, it is necessary to understand the trade-offs and capitalise on the opportunities provided through integration.

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in Blog Blog

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Founded by Abraham Cambridge in 2014, The Sun Exchange is based in South Africa where the company is working to address a huge gap in funding for solar projects. Today, their solution is helping to power factories, schools and wildlife. In this article, Cambridge details Sun Exchange’s experience with blockchain technology.

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Many climate-smart agriculture (CSA) innovations have been developed to help farmers achieve the triple wins of adaptation, productivity and, where possible, reduced emissions. As efforts by different organisations move forward to improve adoption, it is clear that a wide range of factors influence uptake of CSA. Field experiences with CSA projects in three countries highlight how developing shared value among partners has supported the scaling up of CSA.

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When engaging with youth agripreneurs in Africa on the challenges they face, access to finance emerges as a key concern. Closer scrutiny of their business models generally reveals that young entrepreneurs are often not deemed creditworthy, or suitable for investment, primarily because they lack consistent and deep access to their perceived target markets. In short, their order books are lean and their access to markets is limited.

Opinion articles

Background articles

Gender equality: Ag-tech’s potential to boost women’s empowerment

Tiana Cline
by Tiana Cline

Digital technologies are revolutionising agricultural value chains, providing improved access to inputs, finance, markets and weather information. With the right policies and programmes in place, agricultural digitalisation has the potential to facilitate women’s economic empowerment.

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in Spore Analysis

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Agricultural innovations must have a more substantial impact to meet the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 – which call for a concerted effort from the public and private sectors, as well as farmers and processors. To meet the SDGs, impacts at all levels of the agricultural value chain will need to be increased, with the involvement of all stakeholders in the sector.

in Spore Analysis

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Poor food safety regulations hamper Africa’s ability to engage in international food markets. But harmonised regulations, tailored infrastructure and increased public and private sector investment have been identified as interventions that could bolster the continent’s food safety capacity, and ignite its food export market.

in Spore Analysis

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CSA is a now widely implemented approach to agriculture, which focuses on achieving three central goals: sustainably increasing productivity, adapting to adverse climate change, and mitigating the negative impacts of current agricultural practices on the environment.

News articles

Reaping the economic rewards of conservation

Doreen Chilumbu
by Doreen Chilumbu

To overcome the issues of drought and extreme poverty in Zambia, smallholders are being rewarded for taking up climate-smart, conservation practices to increase productivity and protect their environment.

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in A year in review 2018 News

Women play a vitally important role in a whole range of agricultural activities. According to the Pew Research Centre, women make up at least half the productive workforce in some African countries. In addition to their role as food producers, they are responsible for preparing food in the home and ensuring that their families have a nutritious diet. However, it tends to be men, rather than women, who undertake and mostly benefit from profitable activities along agricultural value chains.

Interviews

“African agricultural policies have to be climate proofed”

Friday Phiri
by Friday Phiri

Zambia Country Director for the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), Nachilala Nkombo, discusses the role of both the public and private sectors in adapting agricultural value chains in response to the dual challenges of rapid population growth, and climate change.

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Data Reports

Building a win-win agribusiness solution

Stephanie Lynch
by Stephanie Lynch

An agribusiness in El Salvador is transforming the lives of local communities by providing jobs, training and access to formal markets for farmers and farm workers in the agricultural sector.

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in Spore Field report

Zimbabwe’s mobile network, Econet Wireless, is providing farmers with micro-insurance to cover crops and inputs against damage due to poor weather. The EcoFarmer subscription platform offers farmers a package of mobile phone delivered services to increase their productivity and mitigate risk.

Scientific Articles

The potential of digital agriculture in Africa

Yentyl Williams
by Yentyl Williams

ICT Update spoke with Ben Addom, Team Leader, ICT for Agriculture at CTA and one of the authors of the recent CTA/Dalberg report on D4Ag in Africa, about the key recommendations of the study and the future of the sector.

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Communiques

Head of Finance

CTA seeks to recruit an highly motivated professional to manage the CTA’s financial services and the systems and processes related to the management of the Centre’s financial resources.

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Vacancy

CTA seeks to recruit a Finance Assistant for CTA's Corporate Services department, reporting to the Deputy Accounts & Budget.

Vacancy

CTA seeks to recruit a Financial Controller / Internal Audit to ensure that the expenditures or revenues are consistent with CTA's Financial Regulations & Budget and that the principles of sound financial management are applied.

Events

Transforming Africa’s agriculture: Eyes in the sky, smart techs on the ground

Recognising the opportunities offered by the drone-based systems, in 2016 CTA partnered with leading private sector operators, and assisted African ICT start-ups in acquiring the capacity to deliver UAS services in the framework of this project known as 'Transforming Africa’s agriculture: Eyes in th...

Increasing dairy productivity and incomes for smallholder farmers, and youth enterprise development in the dairy sector East and Southern Africa (DAIRYPROFIT)

The East African region produces 68% of the continent’s milk output, with Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia and Tanzania among the biggest dairy producers. Smallholder milk production accounts for up to 80% of milk produced in the region; most of this milk (80%) is marketed raw, through a ‘warm’ chain (raw mi...