Event News

World Food Day: realising the life-saving and commercial potential of drones in agriculture

13950908853 177c223196 zRapid population growth and poor soil quality have meant that millions of people across the world struggle suffer from hunger. In light of these damning statistics, World Food Day, which takes place on 16 November, is seeking to promote awareness and action for the need to ensure food security and nutritious diets for all

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African Farming weekly digest - 9th - 13th October

CIAT Flickr for AF 307Here is a brief overview of the week’s news on African Farming, from 9th - 13th October 2017 

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IITA and CIMMYT partner AGRA to strengthen maize production in Africa

1024 AGRA IITA CIMMYT signing of MoURepresentatives from the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), and IITA convened at the seventh African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF), held in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, 4 - 8 September, to formalise ongoing strategic partnership and strengthen collaboration

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Aliko Dangote shares secret of backward integration with investors: "Produce the entire value chain"

B2MmA9mIgAAMOy6At the Financial Times' 4th annual Africa Summit at Claridges in London, editor in chief Lionel Barber conducted an extraordinarily candid public conversation with Nigerian Aliko Dangote, Africa's most successful business leader, in the presence of Nigerian vice-president Professor Yemi Osingajo, Congolese presidential hopeful Moise Katumbi, and about 300 business leaders


Mastering detailed production statistics and highly-compelling demographics on promising sectors of the African economy, Dangote outlined the key to his success: self-sufficiency and backward integration, a manufacturing strategy that extracts value from entire processes. "We are not going to import anything any longer," he said. "In Nigeria we are learning how to produce the entire value chain." Once a heavy importer of fertiliser, Nigeria is now gearing up to produce 3mn tonnes of locally manufactured fertiliser, transforming the nation into one of the largest fertiliser exporters in Africa.

In 2007 Nigeria was the second largest importer of cement after the US, Dangote reminded the audience of business elites. "Today, we have not only satisfied domestic needs; we have become a leading exporter of 6-7M tonnes of cement," he added.

Diversifying into agriculture, Dangote has eyes on the dairy industry motivated by the fact that "98 per cent of all milk consumed in Nigeria is imported." Same for rice. Dangote Group has invested heavily in rice production by investing in local farmers and then offering to buy back the 1mn tonnes at open market prices that they are growing. "Soon we will be able to feed not only Nigeria but the entire 320mn large West African market."

Dangote's business accumen was on rare exhibition as FT editor Lionel Barber himself seemed impressed with the business mogul's quick familiarity with the nuts and bolts of his businesses. "Are we going to continue to import everything?" Dangote asked. "Freight rates are now cheap but they will go up soon. A population of over 200mn cannot continue to import basic needs on a daily basis," he answered himself.

By 2100 Dangote stated Africa will represent 49 per cent of the world's population, up from 30 per cent today. "If you don't think big we won't grow at all," he said. "In Africa, you have to play long-term."

Aside from Nigeria, which African nations do you think are good growth opportunities? Barber asked Dangote. "Aside from Nigeria?" the business leader repeated and smiled. "I'd have to pick Nigeria. I am a big fan of Nigeria. We are only using 8 per cent of our land."

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Agribusiness Congress East Africa returns to Kampala in November

2DU Kenya16 5367334314Leading regional farming event Agribusiness Congress East Africa returns to Kampala from 29-30 November as a fully-fledged conference and outdoor exhibition with its move to the National Crops Resources Research Institute (NaCRRI) in Namulonge

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