The East Africa Staples Trade Dialogue brought together key policymakers and private sector stakeholders from the staples value chain to discuss the low engagement of farmer organizations in regional trade activities, cross-border trade financing instruments, and the need for reliable trade data. Participants made recommendations and developed tangible, action plans that will be used to implement business and policy solutions for increased cross-border trade within the EAC. Participants were drawn from the five partner states.
There is need for action, action in the facilitation of trade, ensuring that food from surplus areas makes its way to regions in crisis. This is at the very core of the Feed the Future Initiative, the US Government’s bold effort to combat food insecurity said Mr. Steve Orr, Acting Office Chief Regional Economic Integration USAID Kenya & East Africa pictured above.
The eGranary platform a platform for farmers by farmers that aims to leverage technology to aggregate farmers for input and output markets was officially launched. The platform helps the farmers keep a mobile farm record which will be used which will be used to create a traceability system and history of their enterprises.
There is a lot to be gained from aggregating farmers. They can have a strong bargaining voice in the market and better partnerships, said East Africa Farmers Federation Chief Executive Office, Mr. Stephen Muchiri
On the final day of the event farmers, farmer groups and traders showcased samples of their produce in an open marketplace setting. Several supply deals were struck during this session. For instance one farmer group from Tanzania was able to connect with a trader from Rwanda requiring several thousand metric tonnes of grain