AGRF 2021 Summit Ends with Plea for Sustainable and Resilient Food Systems
After four days of active engagement around the creation of resilient and sustainable food systems in Africa, the AGRF 2021 Summit came to an end on the evening of Friday September 10, 2021.
At the closing ceremony, various leaders from across Africa appealed for the participation of all stakeholders in the pursuit of a food systems transformation that will increase food security and income for all in the continent.
Notably, Lucy Muchoki, the Chief Executive of the Pan-African Agribusiness and Agroindustry Consortium, reiterated that the economic transformation of the continent will be led by its inhabitants, even as she appealed for support from development partners.
Her sentiments were supported by Hon. Dr. Hadiza Sabuwa Balarabe, the Deputy Governor of Nigeria’s Kaduna State, who noted the need for provoking youth participation in agricultural and food systems transformation.
“It has been difficult to get youth attracted to agriculture but we are working to make farming exciting, including through digital agriculture technology,” she said, citing the effort her government is making.
Meanwhile, Dr. Godfrey Bahiigwa, the Director of Agriculture and Rural Development at African Union Commission, announced that Africa had attained a common position for submission to the UN Food Systems Summit (UN FSS) in New York starting September 23.
The UN FSS will bring together the world’s leaders in reviewing the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
“The Africa common position is rich, it has 43 game changing proposals, and if fully implemented will help to transform Africa’s food systems and make them resilient.
“For Africa, in tracking the commitments of the UN FSS that our members will adopt, we shall be using the CAADP Biennial Review Report,” he said.
In his closing remarks, H.E. Hailemariam Desalegn, Chair of the AGRA Board, hailed the AGRF 2021 Summit as a historical event that was attended by a record number of heads of state, ministers, heads of development organizations, business people and farmers.
As confirmed by Jennifer Baarn, the acting Managing Director of the AGRF, in the four days of the AGRF Summit 4000 government officials, investors and entrepreneurs from 89 countries engaged in the Agribusiness Dealroom, where USD 5.1 of investment needs were presented.
Various awards were also presented during the event, including the Africa Food Prize, the GoGettaz Agripreneur Prize and the Value4Her Women Agripreneur of the Year Award (WAYA).
From Nairobi, Kenya, the AGRF Summit goes to Kigali, Rwanda, for 2022 – the official home of the annual event.