Mapping ICT Solutions along the Ag. Value Chain

The agriculture and food security value chain system is known for its complexity with varied actors at various levels interacting among themselves and with their external environment to provide sustainable food security situation across the world. In this complex system, the key for success depends on how well the value chain actors collaborate and coordinate…

ICTs for “Marketing” Component of the Ag Value Chain

Markets for agricultural products is another critical component of the value chain – i.e from the time the produce is ready for harvest till it reaches the final consumer. A number of activities take place within this period from storage, processing, transportation, retail, and wholesale that add value to the produce. These value adding processes…

AMIS-Cameroon for UN’s MDGs 1, 3, 7, and 8

AMIS-Cameroon is bridging information gap in the African country of Cameroon by connecting farmers with vital information through SMS thereby boosting sustainable agricultural activities that promote the UN’s Millennium Development Goals 1 (Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger), 3 (Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women), 7 (Ensure environmental Sustainability), and 8 (Develop a Global Partnership for…

Can ICTs help reduce side-selling? Challenges with financing the Ag Value Chain

I was part of a recent USAID After Hours Seminar Series (even though this particular one was a breakfast event) sponsored by the Microenterprise Development office on the topic “Viewing Value Chain and Household Finance From a Demand Perspective.” The discussion was led by Geoffrey Chalmers, a senior technical advisor at ACDI/VOCA and Jason Agar,…

Social Media @ IFAD’s 2012 GC Meeting

The 35th Session of International Fund for Agriculture and Development (IFAD’s) Governing Council (GC) is currently underway with innovative use of social media for more inclusive, interactive and impact-oriented forum. The 2-day event with the theme “Sustainable smallholder agriculture: feeding the world, protecting the planet” takes off officially on Wednesday at IFAD’s headquarters in Rome…

Nigeria to join Zambia for e-voucher: who’s next?

A new plan using information and communication technologies (ICTs) to facilitate smooth delivery of inputs to farmers will soon be implemented in Nigeria. “With this system, we can trace if somebody is supplying bad fertilizer, supplying sand instead of fertilizer; we know where it comes from as opposed to the old system,” said the Nigerian…

“What’s missing is….” ICTs in the Value Chain!

“Meeting the Challenges of Value Chain Development: A Learning Event,” was the subject for discussion at the just ended 2-day conference organized by USAID at the Night Conference Center, Newseum, Washington DC. The learning event was hosted by the USAID Microenterprise Development office with funding from the Accelerated Microenterprise Advancement Project (AMAP), implemented by ACDI/VOCA…

Mobile Agriculture to feature at the Mobile World Congress 2012

A panel on “Mobile Agriculture: The Market Opportunity” will be one of the highlights at the upcoming Mobile World Congress 2012 scheduled for Barcelona, Spain at the end of this month. This intensive panel session will cover issues on the immediate opportunities for the mobile industry to launch commercially driven services for farmers, and the…

Sustainability Lessons from HSS: Implications for FS & ICTs Projects

“I suspect that the world you’re dealing with is even more complex than the world we’re dealing with in health…health is dealt with by doctors, a very simple minded people, but your field is probably more complex.” Those are the words of Eric Sarriot, Technical Director,  CEDARS at ICF International. Eric was speaking on the topic…

The Myth of E-Voucher Schemes for Enhanced Fertilizer Use

The future use of the information and communication technologies (ICTs) such as e-vouchers in delivering subsidized fertilizer (or other inputs) to farmers in the current information age is blurred due to the very high cost involved in setting up such systems and the anticipated power/energy problems. This was one of the revelations made by experts…