Editor’s Note

Africa’s food systems’ hopes on digitization to catalyze growth

[rt_dropcap_style dropcap_letter=”A” dropcap_content=”s witnessed in other rapidly growing parts of the world it is imperative that Africa hastens in embracing ICT solutions to accelerate agricultural growth and achieve the SDG targets”]

While digital solutions have increased youth participation in agriculture, the impact of digital tools has been uneven geographically and demographically. In many instances, access to ICT has not translated to improved outcomes in food and nutrition security, and livelihoods for agricultural communities in the continent.

Yet at a global scale, ICT solutions are playing an enormous role in streamlining processes from farm to table. As the world awaits the outcomes of the 2021 United Nations Food Systems Summit that will be held on July 26 – 28, 2021 in Rome, Italy ahead of the main summit that will be held in New York in September 2021 that is expected to give a reflection on the SDGs, PanAfrican Agriculture has focused its edition on ICT solutions that are rattling the status quo in the continent and promising to hasten positive agricultural outcomes in Africa.

Africa’s food systems are in the middle of a digital revolution as the COVID-19 pandemic brought forth the weaknesses of present food systems and highlighted the need for access to technology and digital connectivity for all. In this edition, we carry an interview with a great African Statesman, Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of Nigeria and one of the renowned leaders with an outstanding farming background and a passionate advocate for the transformation of the continent’s agricultural sector.

In his own words, Obasanjo strongly believes that agriculture can unlock Africa’s vast potential for socioeconomic growth, alleviate poverty and achieve prosperity for millions of its citizens alongside meeting the SDGs and the Maputo and Malabo declarations.

Modern farming is evolving from the days of hoe-wielding farmers toiling in the sun to a high tech business where farming and marketing decisions are informed by satellites, big data and drones.

Our Q&A interview with the Director General of the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority, Capt Gilbert Kibe, answers questions relating to unmanned aircrafts. It is a high time that our policy makers adopt digital innovations for food systems planning, increase access to finance and insurance, increase production, marketing and access to affordable, nutritious and safe food. Africa must take its hoes to the right placethe museums.


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