Efficient agricultural markets enable cross-border trade in staple foods and contribute to economic growth and food security. According to COMTRADE data, the Hub has contributed to a 69% increase in volume and 18% increase in value of staple foods traded within the EAC between 2014-2017. The Hub works to align regional policies and remove trade bottlenecks by partnering with governments, strategic private sector actors and institutions to harmonize regional staple food standards, support access to finance to large, grain trade deals and build in-country knowledge of and compliance with food, plant and animal safety standards. The Hub also addresses fundamental challenges in crop production, post-harvest handling and trade information by offering capacity building trainings to traders, particularly women, and facilitating the adoption of innovative U.S. technologies.
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Published on August 21, 2017
As the 37th Southern African Development Community (Sadc) Summit kicks off, the longstanding question of how to best spur industrial growth and development in the region is at the top of policy makers’ agendas.
Greater integration of countries into global and regional value chains is a key focus area given the summit’s theme: Partnering with the private sector in developing industry and value chains.
Value chains encompass all the processes that bring a raw material to a final product, for example, from cotton to clothing in the textile industry. Read more. Source | Business Day
Published on August 17, 2017
The Hub works to substantially increase intra-regional and global trade of agricultural commodities directly contributing to the region’s economic growth. This will consequently lead to the attainment of Feed the Future outcomes of increasing the access, availability and utilization of African-grown staple foods in regionally integrated markets. In particular, the Hub’s Agriculture and Agribusiness component aims at doubling the value of intra-regional trade in staple foods by the end of the project. To date, the Hub has supported an increase of 40 percent in value ($187 million) and of staple foods traded within the EAC. The Hub’s strategic grain trade intervention and business-to-business (B2B) activities in financial year 2017 have yielded over 200 market linkages that generated over $1million metric tons in cross-border staples grain trade.
At the policy level, the Hub has supported the EAC Partner States to expedite the ratification of the EAC sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) Protocol, which Kenya ratified in June 2016 while Burundi ratified in June 2017. The Hub has also supported the EAC Partner States to draft revised EAC standards for select staple foods, and the EAC SPS bill, for EAC’s adoption and enactment.
Technology identification, promotion and investment are key areas of focus with the Hub supporting the East Africa PostHarvest Technology Competition 2017 (EAPTC). Three innovators were selected from a group of 25 semi-finalists during the three-day EAPTC Fair that included training sessions, networking sessions and a final competition. The innovators showcased and pitched their innovations to development partners, donors, governments, investors, and farmer and trader associations.
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Published on August 14, 2017
Ethiopia’s economy is in the realms of a dominant agriculture sector, which displays the diversification of commodities to export for increased revenue but still striving for competitive quality.
Ethiopian agriculture remains an important source of economic growth that not only contributes 39 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) but also employs 73 percent of the population.
It is also extending its leading role in export performance by contributing over 75 percent of the 2.91 billion USD that the country has secured in the 2016/17 fiscal year. Read more. Source | Ethiopian Herald
Published on August 08, 2017
Ethiopia is looking to promote its horticulture products in China and different other markets to increase export volumes and revenue, the Horticulture Producers and Exporters Association (EHPEA) has said. The association said various endeavours are already going on to help achieve this goal.
Tewodros Zewdie, the EHPEA executive director, told Xinhua on Wednesday that the country’s export performance of the flower sector in the last few years has shown remarkable progress, but the fruits and vegetables sector is not growing that much compared to its potential.
Tewodros added that the association is working with the public and private stakeholders to address the challenges related to logistics issues, among others. Read more. Source | New Times
Published on August 03, 2017
Five years ago, a season like this, John Losunyen was queuing for relief food somewhere in Isiolo county , in the central part of northeastern Kenya.
Luckily, today, that is not the case as he is currently tending to his tomatoes on a two and a half acre farm where he also rears poultry and keeps cows.
With training and the use of mobile phone technology to access markets and get farming information, Mr Losunyen has been able to fend for his family. Read more. Source | The East African
Published on August 03, 2017
The Heifer International has launched a programme to provide more agricultural market information to 2,000 farmers who have no Internet access.
The non-profit firm, based in Arkansas, US, said it is partnering with London-based Wefarm, a free service that lets farmers use mobile phones to ask questions or seek tips through a local number.
The responses come from other farmers who are on the network and have answers to the questions posed. The Heifer-Wefarm partnership targets farmers in Nakuru County, said George Odhiambo, Heifer country director in Kenya. Read more. Source | Business Daily
Published on August 02, 2017
Horticulture sector players and agriculture students will soon be able to acquire modern farming skills, thanks to a new Israel-sponsored project.
Epimaque Nsanzabaganwa, the head of horticulture division at National Agriculture Export Board (NAEB), said the $2.5 million (about Rwf2 billion) Horticulture Centre of Excellence will target agriculture university students, researchers, and sector stakeholders, especially those working informally.
“Under the project, the target groups will be trained in modern skills and the latest knowledge about growing of vegetables and fruits, which they will then pass on to farmers,” Nsanzabaganwa explained. Read more. New Times
Published on August 02, 2017
The Kenyan ministry of agriculture on Tuesday signed an agreement worth 3 million U.S. dollars with a local bank, Equity Bank to boost access to credit among smallholder farmers who contribute an estimated 70 percent of food production in the country.
Cabinet Secretary for Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Willy Bett said the Agriculture Credit Guarantee Scheme agreement (ACGS) with Equity Bank will cushion smallholders from under-financing that hinders productivity.
"This new credit guarantee scheme will enable small scale farmers’ access funds to cater for critical inputs like seeds, fertilizers and pesticides. We are exploring new financing models for smallholders to enhance sustainability of their enterprise," said Bett. Read more. Source | Coast Week