Invest in smallholder farmers to ensure food security
Mr. Changwe Kumalinga, Chief Financial Officer, Good Nature Agro, has underscored the importance that smallholder farmers could play in global food security.
Date Created : 9/20/2023 12:00:00 AM : Story Author : Paul Eduarko Richardson/Ghanadistricts.com
He said that with the right technology, investment, and market access, smallholder farmers could feed the world.
According to him, providing farmers access to markets and ensuring they get sustainable incomes would motivate them to grow more and make farming more attractive to youths.
"This will increase food security because they will grow enough for themselves and the rest of the world," Mr Kumalinga explained.
Mr. Kumalinga said this at an Agribusiness session organised by the European Union on the topic “Towards a sustainable agribusiness sector in Ghana: Challenges and Opportunities.”
The event was part of the activities marking the Association of Ghana Industries' (AGI) 2023 edition of the Ghana Industrial Summit and Exhibition (GISE) with the theme "Industrialisation through Sustainable and Efficient Supply Chains."
In a presentation on innovative business models to support smallholder farmers, Mr Kumalinga shared the success story of Good Nature Agro, a legume seed company based in Zambia and Malawi.
He emphasized the adoption of the upside-down approach, which involves starting the value chain with the seed or commodity buyer.
Mr. Kumalinga stressed the need to be intentional about the data collected on farmers since it creates many opportunities, such as attracting financial investments.
He emphasised that data should be collected not only on the farmer but also on the farm.
Also, the farm and farmer data should be customized and individualised to ensure increased output and income.
“For example, proper soil mapping using individualised data can prevent the application of wrong fertilizer on the wrong soil,” he stated.
Mr. Kumalinga stated that it was essential to maintain the right team with the right training and support.
He stated that no investor would support a venture where one person handled all business obligations.
Ms. Isabelle Antunès, a researcher, said unconventional foods, which are the foods for the future, have a huge market potential in Sub-Saharan Africa.
She said Africa’s food security must be redesigned by considering the cultural and biodiversity heritage to unleash Africa’s agricultural potential.