COMESA enhances seed trade by developing certified labels, fosters trade in animal under AfCFTA

AFRICA – The Alliance for Commodity Trade in Eastern and Southern Africa (ACTESA) is a specialized agency of COMESA, focused on agricultural development, has developed over four million physical seed labels that are ready for use by seed companies in the region. ACTESA, manages the Seed Development Programme which is implemented within the guidelines of the COMESA Seed Harmonisation Implementation Plan (COMSHIP). In line with COMSHIP, the programme has developed the COMESA Variety Catalogue, a platform that contains seed varieties which comply with requirements of having the seed registered in…

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InspiraFarms, Ifria partner to develop farm to market cold chain solutions in West and North Africa

AFRICA – African providers of cold storage solutions, Ifria Cold Chain Development Company and InspiraFarms, have entered into a regional strategic partnership to bring together deep knowledge in the cold chain business, technology development as well as economic and financial deployment skills in African countries. The partnership leverages on Ifria’s cold chain logistics expertise together with InspiraFarms’ next-generation on-farm cold chain & food handling technology and solutions. Ifria is an integrated cold chain development company operating in franchise, license, or directly- cold chain logistics assets, ranging from added value cold storage/logistic warehouses…

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World Bank issues US$375m financing to revitalize pastoralism in the Sahel region

AFRICA – The Board of World Bank’s Executive Directors have approved the new US$375 million IDA financing, to support the implementation of the second Regional Sahel Pastoralism Support Project, known by its French acronym PRAPS-2 (Projet regional d’appui au pastoralisme au Sahel-Phase 2). The project is aimed to improve the productivity and resilience of pastoral production systems in the Sahel region including in Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal. Building on the successes of its predecessor (PRAPS-1), PRAPS-2 will pursue investments to establish more robust animal health systems,…

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Impact investor Root Capital to finance agribusinesses in Africa through US$35m DFC’s investment

AFRICA – Root Capital, a nonprofit impact investor offering farmers around the world a path to prosperity, has receives US$35 million support from the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC). The investment will provide financing to small and growing agricultural businesses in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and Southeast Asia. This will help break the cycle of rural poverty, reduce food insecurity, and increase environmental sustainability, while responding to the COVID-19 related challenges facing smallholder agriculture. It will also advance women’s economic empowerment, with at least 50 percent of Root Capital’s…

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Jumia cashes in on bullish stock trading aims to raise US$400m to finance expansion drive

AFRICA – The New York Stock Exchange listed Africa-focused eCommerce company, Jumia is seeking to raise US$400 million by floating 9 million American depositary shares (ADS). ADS are stocks offered by non-US companies, available to be purchased by US investors. Secondary sales like this are usually done by public companies to finance debt or facilitate growth. The Ecommerce giant with stock trading at US$42.14 on Monday, aims to raise more cash to fund its expansion drive. Jumia listed the ADSs at US$50 per share, but investors could buy these shares…

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AfDB appoints Atsuko TODA as acting Vice President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development

AFRICA – The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) has announced the appointment of Ms. Atsuko TODA as Acting Vice President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development, effective 16 March 2021. She takes over the position from Wambui Gichuri who was also appointed on acting capacity from 5th July 2020. The position was left vacant following the resignation of Dr Jennifer Blanke on purely family reasons, intending to rejoin her family in Switzerland after a very fulfilling time at the bank. Atsuko, a Japanese citizen, is a seasoned professional with over…

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Top 100 Food Companies in Africa 2020: Celebrating An Industry in Transformation

The food industry in the continent of Africa is on a long journey of transformation. A transformation that pits local startups against medium scale family groups, regional giants and conglomerates and last but not least, international behemoths that call Africa home, and which continue to vote with their top dollars on a continent that they do believe, is the future of their ambitions. The Food Business Africa Top 100TM is a biennial listing of some of Africa’s leading food, beverage and milling companies – the first such listing by any…

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AGRA fosters investment readiness of African agribusiness SMEs through launch of SME Resource Bank

AFRICA – AGRA, an alliance led by Africans with roots in farming communities across the continent has launched an online SME Resource Bank, a platform where the African agribusiness Small and Medium Enterprises can find articulated requirements to make the investment ready. The SME Resource Bank, according to AGRA is now a component of the AgriBusiness Deal Room, a matchmaking online platform convening close to 4,000 stakeholders from the entire eco-system to facilitate partnerships and investments in African agriculture. The Agribusiness Deal Room is delivered by a consortium of partners…

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COVID-19 shocks to still influence consumer shift towards local products, essential goods, eCommerce platforms

AFRICA – Movement restrictions of both goods and people triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increased focus on local production and consumption, as massive supply shortages were experienced during 2020. This is also spearheaded by government legislation aimed at local economic stimulus, coupled with the increased cost of imported goods, indicates Euromonitor International, a market research provider. Initiatives such as the government-funded Proudly South African campaign has started to showcase locally-manufactured products on a dedicated website benefiting small scale manufacturers in particular. In West Africa, the government…

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United Nations, Ecobank Group launch Make the Connection campaign to alleviate malnutrition in Africa

AFRICA – UNITLIFE, the United Nations initiative dedicated to fighting chronic malnutrition through innovation, and the Ecobank Group’s Foundation, the pan-African banking group with operations in 33 countries across the continent have launched the “Make the Connection” campaign, which aims to raise awareness and funds to prevent chronic malnutrition in Africa. According to the agency, 144 million children under the age of 5 suffer from chronic malnutrition worldwide. The prevalence is highest in Africa, where as many as 24 African countries have rates above 30%. This means 1 in 3…

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