Debating the ‘triple A’ initiative: Advancing African Agriculture

Brussels Development Briefings

More than 100 participants gathered in Brussels on October 17 to discuss the EC communication on “Advancing African Agriculture.”

Sir John Kaputin, Secretary General of the ACP Secretariat, and Lluis Riera, of DG Development, set the stage, contextualising the initiative and the role of agriculture in ACP countries.

From the European Commission, Lluis Riera focussed on three aspects: the rationale of the ‘triple A”; its key messages; and the mechanisms facilitating partnerships in the implementation.

The “AAA” initiative starts from the recognition that Africa cannot reach the MDGs if support to agriculture is not reinforced. It is vital to overcome the recent neglect of agriculture in development cooperation – in this regard the recent attention to agriculture by the World Bank is a positive sign; the CAADP process is a key instrument to achieve change.

The key message of the ‘triple A’ is that the main playing fields…

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Africa’s new generation of farmers. Resources for small farmers in Africa

Foundation for Young Farmers

Image from:

It is no secret that Africa is known to be a vast portal for the production of endless treasures. These natural resources include diamonds, gold, oil, iron, copper, silver, petroleum, cocoa beans, as well as various tropical fruits. Although the continent known as the “motherland,” is rich in precious natural resources, Africa’s reality of being faced with a dire issue in relation to food resources and agricultural production needs, as well as water scarcity is becoming a serious concern for the ever growing population.

Due to the rising population of Africans steadily ballooning and said to expand on throughout the year 2050, the demand for educating the next generation of young African farmers in agriculture is ever growing. Organizations that will find the education of young African farmers on agriculture and the possibilities of using farm equipment such as tractors and other types of used farm machinery…

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Are you looking for nutrition-smart food systems ? (Willem Van Cotthem)


What are the nutrition-smart food systems we are looking for ?

By Dr. Willem Van Cotthem (University of Ghent, Belgium)

Today, I have been reading with great interest the article on

“Why Our Food Systems Need to Be More Nutrition-Smart”

An Analysis by Howarth Bouis – Edited by Kitty Stapp

Here is the article I found on

WASHINGTON, Nov 8 2014 (IPS) – “We are especially distressed by the high prevalence and increasing numbers of malnourished children under five years of age in parts of Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean. Moreover, more than 2000 million people, mostly women and children, are deficient in one or more micronutrients…”

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Using Gamification to improve knowledge of Agriculture in Africa – Farm Defenders #ICT4Ag

Kalu Samuel's Blog

In recent times gamification has been used to learn new skills, however I always thought improving knowledge of Agriculture in Africa using gamification is not possible until I played the Farm Defenders game. The Farm Defender is a 3D farm simulation game spanning the entire continent of Africa that lets you create farms in every environment, from the lush tropics to the barren deserts. Grow your crops and become wealthy all while preventing disease, pests, and maximizing yield using real-life African farming techniques sustainably.

The Farm Defenders is an initiative to “gamify” economic development in Africa by realistically simulating local conditions. The simulation is realistic to the details of the local soil type, weather, and natural challenges and is not your typical farming simulation video game.

IMG00394-20131105-1010 Playing the Farm Defenders Game at the #ICT4Ag13 conference in Kigali, Rwanda.

Here’s a synopsis from the Farm Defenders website:

“This game…

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South Africa: Five Diseases, One #Vaccine – a Boost for Emerging #Livestock Farmers in Sub-Saharan #Africa

Our vaccines will have the potential to control six important African livestock diseases. But, in order for them to be effectively used by emerging rural farmers, education in livestock care and vaccine use is critical and has been initiated.

Ultimately we see the result of this project being greater food and economic security through improved animal health as it relates to the increased availability of food and other products from animals, such as milk, cheeses, meat, wool, hides, yoghurt and ‘maas’ (soured/fermented milk). The vaccines should be low-cost, easy to administer, stable and provide long-term protection.” – David Wallace, ARC

via South Africa: Five Diseases, One Vaccine – a Boost for Emerging Livestock Farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa.

via South Africa: Five Diseases, One #Vaccine – a Boost for Emerging #Livestock Farmers in Sub-Saharan #Africa.

It is rather easy to offer to all the families fresh food (Willem Van Cotthem)




The project “Family gardens in the Saharawis refugees camps of Tindouf, S.W. Algeria” has been very successful (2005-2007).  Today, the refugees continue the construction of new gardens with the help of NGOs and individual sponsors. A series of videos will show that it is rather easy  to offer to all the families in the camps the possibility to produce fresh food.  (To be continued)

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Using forage germplasm to improve livestock feeds and rural livelihoods: An impact narrative

ILRI Clippings

Feed is often cited as a major constraint to livestock intensification in developing countries. In addressing this constraint through the breeding of more productive forage varieties, scientists’ starting point is the diversity of forage species held in the world’s plant genebanks.

The forage collection maintained by ILRI, for example, contains germplasm from around 19,000 plant populations representing over 1,400 forage species, including grasses, legumes and fodder trees, many of which are under threat in the wild from land use changes and over-grazing. ILRI’s forage collection is providing scientists with the genetic material to develop climate-smart, high yielding and disease tolerant varieties that will have a key role in Africa’s farming

Download the research brief

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