Transform Food Festival, igniting ideas for systemic action to transform Kenya’s food systems

Stella Odhiambo

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Why the Transform Food Festival?

The need for food systems leadership in Africa is greater than ever. The nature of the challenges facing food systems is increasingly clear. There is no shortage of evidence, ideas, or ambition. What is needed now is action: more effective, systemic action toward healthier, more inclusive, and sustainable outcomes on the continent.

The idea for the Transform Food Festival was to inspire individual and collective action to transform food systems.

The Transform Food Festival was conceived within the African Food Fellowship that is bringing together a new crop of leaders who will build healthier, more inclusive, and sustainable food systems across the continent. The festival convened leaders and practitioners to unlock new ideas, connections, and systemic action for the collective transformation of Africa’s food systems.

The Festival & Award

The festival was an inspirational gathering designed to showcase innovations in food systems, unlock new ideas and foster strong connections for action. The exclusive guest list included Fellows and guests of the African Food Fellowship, innovators, entrepreneurs, and pioneers in government, the private sector and civil society.

Participants enjoyed a vibrant and action-packed afternoon, with sessions ranging from plenary presentations to more intimate discussions in break-out groups.

The festival culminated in the Food Systems Leadership Award, an annual, national award for outstanding leadership for transforming Food Systems. Aquaculture fellows Dr Erick Ogello and Fredrick Juma won the most promising food systems leader and most promising food system initiative awards respectively.

Ogello was recognised for his contributions to research in live fish food production while Juma won the judges over with his commitment to protecting community livelihoods through farming the black soldier fly.

Watch a short video documentary of their work.

Looking ahead

“The journey toward healthier, more inclusive, and sustainable outcomes requires new forms of collaborative leadership which is what the festival hopes to achieve,” said African Food Fellowship Kenya Dean and Implementation Lead Brenda Mareri.

“We need bold actions to radically transform food systems that are failing people and the environment. We know that leaders have an incredible power to harness change and that networks play a big role to connect like-minded leaders. Our ambition is to nurture and self a network of leaders that come together to drive this change”, said Claudia Piacenza, regional manager of the African Food Fellowship.

“The Transform Food Festival represents a journey of togetherness, hope and opportunity. This gathering includes the sharpest actors in the industry working on solutions to the most pressing challenges facing food systems today. The African Food Fellowship is proud to catalyse collaborations among different sectors represented here to spark impactful action on the ground,” said African Food Fellowship Director Joost Guijt.

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Africa deserves better food systems; this is how we are making it happen

Wasafiri together with Wageningen University and Research, is growing a movement of food systems leaders working to transform food on the continent

The African Food Fellowship is just 16 months old, opening its doors in Kenya in May 2021 with a cohort of 27 food systems professionals drawn from aquaculture, horticulture and agri-finance. It expanded to Rwanda in October of the same year admitting another group of 27 Fellows this time drawn from actors working in food entrepreneurship, access to nutritious food and sustainable land use.

The Fellowship completed its pilot phase in June this year, counting among its successes the graduation of Kenyan and Rwandan Fellows from the Food Systems Leadership Programme in April and September respectively.

“[The programme so far] exceeded our expectations in many ways. Firstly, we confirmed that there are a great number of wonderful leaders working on food systems transformation in their communities and countries, who really want to up their leadership role and effectiveness. Secondly, we developed from scratch and implemented a top-quality food systems leadership programme,” says Fellowship Director Joost Guijt.

There is a big need for a dedicated programme like this to complement the efforts of others. The Fellowship is co-run by world-class experts from Wageningen University and Research and has just secured additional funding to help support its operations for the next five years. This is wonderful news and shows we are well on our way to being here for the long haul.

“In the next phase, we will be working on building the core components of the African Food Fellowship including country Fellowships, the leadership programme, and research. Until 2024 we will expand and create solid foundations in Rwanda and Kenya, and then grow to other countries. Our hope is to be in at least seven countries across Africa by 2027,” added Joost.

Upon graduation, Fellows form country Fellowships to which they have a lifetime membership. While they still enjoy support from the Fellowship secretariat, especially in their nascent phase, country Fellowships are envisioned as semi-autonomous platforms that allow Fellows to congregate and remain engaged in each other’s work.

The Kenya Food Fellowship will, for instance, host a Transform Food Festival event in November this year bringing together top food systems leaders from across the country for a day of showcasing initiatives and learning from each other.

The Fellowship’s formidable Fellows are making big splashes in the food world with incredible results – healthier, more accessible and more sustainable food in East Africa.

Discover some of the cool things our Fellows are doing. Also, follow our pages to keep up with more Fellowship news.

Photo by Jan Kopřiva on Unsplash

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Wasafiri empowering food systems transformation leaders in Rwanda

The African Food Fellowship initiative which is empowering a dedicated network of food systems leaders across Africa, launches the Rwanda Food Fellowship.

Rwanda cohort of the African Food Fellowship
The pioneering Rwanda cohort graduates after successfully completing the Food Systems Leadership Programme.

Lots of promise during the showcasing event

The African Food Fellowship officially established its roots in Rwanda last week during a lively, engaging and activity-packed event held at Norrsken Kigali House, Kigali. Attendees included representatives from the Fellowship’s faculty, a representative from Rwanda’s Ministry of Agriculture, Mr. Jean Claude Ndorimana who is the Advisor to the Minister, and of course, the thrilled fellows and their equally thrilled guests.

Representing three impact areas: Access to Nutritious Food, Sustainable Land Use, and Food Entrepreneurship, Rwanda’s first cohort of fellows showcased their systems initiatives under the backdrop of an exciting, creative, and insightful session.

Rwanda Implementation Lead and Dean, Anysie Ishimwe was left hopeful and inspired. “The systems initiatives showcase was an opportunity for fellows to share with their guests and each other the opportunities and challenges they are encountering on their journey. Their initiatives are very promising as they entail solutions with the potential to bring out system-wide change” she said.

“One of our fellows, Janvier Ahimanishyize, is working on digitising existing farmer extension guides so that farmers can access needed information using a USSD code and another fellow, Alexis Rutangengwa, from National Land Authority, leveraged his team to work on a district-level land use plan using in-house expertise. He has been tasked to do the same for country-wide districts by the aforementioned institution”, she added.

The event also marked the launch of the Rwanda Food Fellowship and for the Fellows, the beginning of a lifelong leadership journey towards more inclusive, sustainable, and healthy food systems for Rwanda and for the continent; a challenge they now feel they have the tools to take on.

The bigger picture

The African Food Fellowship aims to catalyse a continental network of national chapters working towards common principles and to be a one-stop shop for food systems knowledge and action support. This launch marks an important next step in realising that vision.

The Rwanda Food Fellowship will continue to foster a community that will inspire informed and influential peer connectivity, spur action and actionable ideas, and offer a forum for Africa-focused and collaborative solutions.

Echoing the words of Dean Anysie Ishimwe, “today is the beginning of an even longer and more exciting journey of collaboration towards the transformation of Rwanda’s food systems, and as our inaugural cohort you have a unique opportunity to leverage and shape this network, as well as pave the way for those who will join you from future cohorts.”

For Wasafiri, the launch of the Kenya and now Rwanda Food Fellowship shows our continued contribution to ongoing systemic efforts to change the narrative around African Leadership within food systems. We also keep advancing our aim to help deliver the progress promised in the 2014 Malabo Declaration, which aims to end hunger on the continent by 2025 and to promote intra-Africa food exchange through the continental free trade area.

Have a peek at the photos of our graduated Fellows and follow us on our social media pages to keep up with what’s next for the Fellows and other Fellowship-related news.

The food systems leadership programme is a 10-month flagship programme of the African Food Fellowship, an initiative facilitated by the Wageningen University & Research and Wasafiri Consulting & Institute, with support from IKEA Foundation.

Connect with Africa Food Fellowship

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Powering inclusive technologies: Good Food Hub helps serve digitally excluded rural communities

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are quiet revolutionaries that nourish families, improve equity in their communities, and innovate for sustainability and health.

Wasafiri launched the Good Food Hub in 2021 for pioneering entrepreneurs to access support, meet peers, and advocate for a more conducive business ecosystem. Since then, the hub has continued to include the voice of food SMEs in the global policy space in various ways.

Among them, the Hub has hosted a series of dialogues with five UN Food Systems Summit coalitions, asking how they can each integrate and support the transformative potential of pioneering small businesses, collaborated with SAFIN, IFC and IFAD to ensure financial service providers and policy experts hear from food entrepreneurs amidst the growing Ukraine crisis, and together with HarvestPlus, has provided opportunities to entrepreneurs to procure and market nutrient-enriched grains and other staples to their customers.

Recently, the Good Food Hub provided a valuable platform for Mastercard to engage directly with Good Food entrepreneurs who use digital technology to work with farmers, supply chain partners, or consumers. The learning event introduced a tool to help entrepreneurs expand their access and reach to remote communities with limited connectivity, reduce costs, and realise new revenue opportunities.

Mastercard has recently developed technical solutions for serving digitally excluded individuals, especially for rural communities in Africa and South Asia. They’ve discovered that the same four common components are required for such services.

They have moved these components into a single platform called Community Pass. It offers a shared, interoperable infrastructure for any service providers seeking to build applications. These components are:

  1. Functional Identity (Inclusive Identity Service): Everyone on the Community Pass platform has a singular identity that simplifies their access to multiple services.
  2. Digital Acceptance Devices (Point of Interaction Service): An Android-based device that enables programme and service delivery of multiple Community Pass programmes, while supporting third-party solutions and digital payment methods through standard or biometric-based authentication
  3. Shared Wallets (Multi-Wallet Service): One chip card that allows offline access to multiple services and products – making digital account issuance possible and enabling a seamless and cost-effective transition to traditional financial products.
  4. Secure & Protected Data (Data Services): Access to data that is otherwise difficult to attain across geographies and use cases, for impact and more effective service delivery.

How might entrepreneurs benefit from Community Pass?

CK Japheth, Co-Founder of The Innovation Village noted how powerful it was for his Ugandan entrepreneurs to enter into partnership with a global company like Mastercard. The Community Pass platform provides a plug n’ play digital foundation upon which they can build their applications, whilst the brand association gives them increased credibility with users, investors and local partners.

Community Pass also allows entrepreneurs to pursue a significant scale. For example, instead of having to build an agent network in rural areas, an entrepreneur can quickly access all the digital agents already using the platform.

This opportunity linked Mastercard with entrepreneurs who are already doing inspiring work with smallholder farmers. The entrepreneurs articulated how Community Pass might help them overcome diverse pain points such as data management and dependability, financial payments, farmer registration, digital literacy, supply chain transparency, and bank integration.

To watch the event and access further information about Community Pass, go to the Good Food Hub.

Do you want to reach pioneering food entrepreneurs?

If your organisation also wants to support SMEs to scale, innovate, or advocate as they pioneer better food for all, then please join us at the Good Food Hub or get in touch at hub@goodfood.business to explore how we might work together.

Read more about the Good Food Hub

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Where’s the coffee at the AGRF?

‘Where’s the coffee?’ was a question I overheard as a leading farmers representative walked past me talking with a colleague at the AGRF summit 2022 in Kigali this week.

Africa’s premier forum for agriculture and food systems is a hard but rewarding set of meetings and sessions.

The AGRF is impressive and valuable because it is well attended. It comprises many of the leading players on food systems transformation in Africa. A networking frenzy is the result as all of us participants make up for lost human contact due to Covid19 in recent years. Handshakes are in plenty, and rooms are abuzz with groups clustered together.

Meeting so many passionate people in person and exploring what is working and not working with Africa’s food systems gives us all energy for the road ahead. What is clear is that we have a long way to go but there is no shortage of positive stories of progress to build the spirit.

Four years ago, also in Kigali, I attended my first AGRF. While it was a good event there were some important aspects that received little attention.

So, what’s different in 2022?

Nutrition is a big focus

Well for one, nutrition has a much higher profile with several dedicated sessions. There are regular references to the importance of good nutrition from notable policymakers and influencers on the continent, including the African Union Commissioner Lionel Sacko, AGRA President Agnes Kalibata, leaders of international organisations, as well as first ladies across the continent including Her Excellency Jeannette Kagame here in Rwanda.

This is helped by the AU designating 2022 as the year of nutrition with the goal of “Strengthening Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security on the African Continent”. This is great. I’ve been a passionate supporter on advancing good nutrition for over 15 years. If anything, we need to do more.

Climate and nature counts

Second, I’ve noticed a big shift in emphasis on how to deliver improvements in food systems (particularly food production) that can contribute to climate resilience and stronger nature outcomes. The environment now appears to matter to agriculture policymakers and influencers.

Hooray! This is huge.

I think it reflects in part some encouragement to focus on the issue by AGRF’s partners as well as global climate discourse and the upcoming COP 27 in Africa.

A new generation of leaders is emerging

As an action-oriented person, a truly inspiring element of the AGRF this year is a new force for change on the continent. I’m referring to a powerful and fresh generation of leaders for transforming national food systems in Africa.

While it is still early days, the African Food Fellowship, and the Centre for African Leaders in Agriculture (CALA) are impressive as they work to empower food systems leaders for the journey ahead. I enjoyed meeting many CALA delegates and African Food Fellows.

This force of leaders is essential in the months, years, and decades ahead if the talk of transforming food systems is to turn into reality. More of them are needed. Food Systems Leaders that can grow businesses, lead civil society, and shape government policy and support services with a systems mindset are the catalyst to the changes that the world needs.

Already, they are seeking new forms of collaboration and are better at overcoming barriers to change. The bigger shared picture that binds food systems leaders is a food system that delivers good outcomes for people in terms of incomes and nutrition, while also looking after the climate and nature. For too long there has been a mindset of seeking one outcome to the detriment of the others.

As I sit on a KQ flight from Kigali to Nairobi, I find myself asking the question: “Where’s the coffee?” And I quietly appreciate all those people that work hard to bring us the things we value and often take for granted.

The African Food Fellowship

The African Food Fellowship is a practical, collaborative, and visionary leadership initiative for inclusive and regenerative food futures on the continent.

Wageningen University & Research and Wasafiri Consulting initiated this fellowship to help deliver progress promised in the 2014 Malabo Declaration, which aims to end hunger on the continent by 2025, and to promote intra-Africa food exchange through the continental free trade area.

The initiative enjoys support from the IKEA Foundation.

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African Food Fellowship offers essential platform for food systems leaders to discuss regional food crisis

The first Kenya cohort to come out of the African Food Fellowship’s food systems leadership programme will this year hold a series of dialogues to exchange and amplify ideas around the biggest food systems issues of the day.

Recognising the current profound uncertainty and insecurity across food systems globally and in the region, the fellows zeroed in on coming together to examine the impacts of the food crisis and how this was being experienced across East Africa as well as discussing the various ways that are emerging of responding to this crisis.

The inaugural dialogue was held virtually on 24 June 2022 and was off to a promising start with an encouraging turnout, reinforcing the commitment of the pioneering cohort; ever at the forefront of food systems transformation discourse.

The session’s primary objective was met; to have the fellows draw from their respective work and share practical and timely insights and ideas to inform their food systems leadership in the context of the regional food crisis, and how they can apply them in their capacity as food systems leaders.

“The session was insightful and highlighted the importance of shifting focus to ourselves by first being a food-secure country through homegrown solutions,” said Horticulture Fellow Tele Boit.

The Fellowship’s knowledge agenda lead Herman Brouwer was also in attendance, shared recent research co-authored by Wageningen University and Research (WUR) on the impacts of the Ukraine war on food security in vulnerable countries and into likely scenarios and outcomes of the crisis.

These dialogues will facilitate knowledge building and sharing, allowing Fellows to
inform the ‘Transform Food Kenya’ festival, slated for later in the year. This national event will offer an important forum for leaders to come together for more effective, collective action to tackle the crisis.

The next dialogue is scheduled for August.

The food systems leadership programme is a flagship programme of the African Food Fellowship, an initiative facilitated by the Wageningen University & Research and Wasafiri Consulting & Institute, with support from IKEA Foundation.

Learn more by subscribing to the African Food Fellowship social media pages:

Photo courtesy of Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation

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27 Kenyan food systems leaders complete the final stages of prestigious Fellowship

“We did it!” beamed proud Aquaculture Fellow Proscovia Alando, one of 27 Fellows in the inaugural African Food Fellowship cohort from Kenya who added yet another feather to their cap on April 1, 2022. They proudly received certificates for successfully completing Stages 2 and 3 of the Food Systems Leadership Programme.

The Fellows, who are renowned in their respective fields, were grouped into three focus areas: Horticulture, Aquaculture, and Agri-finance. They graduated from the “Systems Action” and “Sharing and Reflection” stages of the programme, which served as an incubator for testing, refining, and practical application of their ideas.

It was an engaging, activity-packed day that was held in Nairobi’s Social House and attended by the Fellowship’s faculty, technical mentors from Wageningen University & Research (WUR) and Wasafiri, and delighted coaches. For the fellows who attended (and for the few who joined in virtually), the excitement of meeting their counterparts, some for the first time in person, was palpable.

African Food Fellowship ceremony
Agri-Finance Fellow Janet Ngombalu receives her certificate from the Dean.

After going through the rigorous 10-month Food Systems Leadership Programme, our food systems are in good, capable hands. For the Fellows this proud moment marks the beginning of a lifelong leadership journey towards more inclusive, sustainable, and healthy food systems for our continent. A challenge they now feel empowered to take on.

For us too, it shows encouraging headway with our aim to help deliver progress promised in the 2014 Malabo Declaration, which aims to end hunger on the continent by 2025 and to promote intra-Africa food exchange through the continental free trade area.

Echoing the words of Fellowship Implementation Lead and proud Dean of the African Food Fellowship, Eunice Khaguli, “we’re building a movement”. We couldn’t agree more.

Have a peek at more photos of the Fellows and follow us to keep up with what’s next for the Fellows and other Fellowship-related news.

Hongera once again. Congratulations!

Wageningen University & Research and Wasafiri Consulting initiated this fellowship to help deliver progress promised in the 2014 Malabo Declaration, which aims to end hunger on the continent by 2025 and to promote intra-Africa food exchange through the continental free trade area. The initiative enjoys support from the IKEA Foundation.

Read more Fellowship related blogs

Photo by Daniel Fazio on Unsplash

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Good Food hub leads discourse supporting small food businesses to advance decent work and living incomes and wages

The Decent Work and Living Incomes and Wages (DWLIW) Coalition is working to improve conditions that will positively impact up to 1.5 billion people working in food systems across the world – from pastoralists to small businesses, to food preparers.

The urgency of this ambitious goal is driven largely by the impacts of Covid-19 over the past two years, which brought forward the essentiality of such workers to our day-to-day lives.

With two-thirds of the extreme poor engaged in agriculture, a sector in which more than 90 percent of employment is informal, SMEs play a critical role in strengthening the incomes and wages of food value chain workers across the world.

On March 23, 2022, the Good Food Hub hosted a dialogue with the DWLIW Coalition and small businesses. The dialogue brought food entrepreneurs in direct conversation with representatives from international organisations like ILO, IFAD, and WBCSD, to highlight how small businesses are advancing decent work in their specific value chains, as well as the constraints they face in expanding this impact.

Three key topics discussed included:

  1. Prioritizing women accelerates systems change.
  2. Digital tools can accelerate decent work, and they can also exacerbate the digital divide.
  3. A holistic supply chain approach, with producers/those most vulnerable at the centre, is needed.

Prioritizing women accelerates systems change

Alejandro of Indiegrow (Colombia) and Lastiana of Aliet Green (Indonesia) both shared about the specific challenges women face in accessing decent work.

Lastiana shared her personal journey facing discrimination in Indonesia as a woman starting an innovative business. Indiegrow works to increase women’s decision-making power in the coffee value chain, so they can have greater agency in their income earned and overall role in the sector.

As both businesses prioritize improving women’s livelihoods in their business operations, both have seen the rapid knock-on effects.

Digital tools can accelerate decent work, and they can also exacerbate the digital divide

Digital tools, like e-commerce and logistics platforms, can improve the efficiency of value chains, with the potential to bring more value back to the producer.

Hemense of AFEX Commodities (Nigeria) shared how their business includes digital platforms as one way of improving the wider infrastructure of Nigeria to increase farmer returns. However, they also employ non-digital strategies to reach areas where internet connection is limited.

In addition to internet access as a barrier, many small businesses, producers, and other food workers are simply too fatigued to learn new technologies, so accessing digital resources can be a barrier.

A holistic supply chain approach, with producers/those most vulnerable at the centre, is needed

Decent work and living incomes and wages is an issue that impacts the entire supply chain, and it requires transparency across the supply chain to improve.

The entrepreneurs called for restructuring supply chains in a way that allows producers and other vulnerable groups in supply chains to capture more value. The DWLIW Coalition is bringing together the broader infrastructure to improve how the entire food economy is run.

This dialogue brought together champions for living wages working at different levels of the food system in conversation, and the Coalition is eager to continue surfacing these voices to ground-truth their efforts that often operate at a broader policy level, but closely affect small businesses.

This article was first published on the Good Food Hub on March 30, 2022.

Are you making our food more nourishing, sustainable, equitable and resilient? Join the Good Food Hub today.

Photo by Omer Faruq Khan from Pexels

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African Food Fellowship at the forefront of Rwanda’s food systems transformation roundtable

"Unlocking innovation to transform Rwanda’s food systems"

The Fireside Chat conversation is part of the larger IGNITE Food Systems Challenge which will be taking place at the Kigali Conference Centre on March 25, 2022.

The Challenge, which is a first of its kind, will provide an important platform to pitch to Food Systems experts and win much-needed financial and technical support.

The African Food Fellowship’s Dean Eunice Khaguli together with three Rwanda Fellows Florence Mwashimba, Kelvin Odoobo, and Esther Ndungutse Mukundane are excited to be a part of a roundtable discussion on “Unlocking innovation to transform Rwanda’s food systems”.

The fireside chat will convene key players from the local ecosystem for an open and frank discussion about food systems transformation and how to unlock innovation and systems change thinking in Rwanda.

Meet the speakers

Eunice Khaguli

Dean, African Food Fellowship and Senior Manager Food Systems and Inclusive Growth, Wasafiri Consulting & Institute

Eunice is an international development consultant and seasoned incubator, convenor and evaluator of food systems, private sector development and inclusive growth initiatives in Africa.

Her passion to see Africa’s food system transformation championed by Africans is mirrored in her current work at the African Food Fellowship; AGRF 2021; CAADP (Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme) Biennial Review amplification sessions; UNFSS Small Business Agenda and Generation Africa.

Eunice, a firm believer in collective action, has been at the helm of the African Food Fellowship as its Dean since its inception in 2021. Since then and under her joint leadership, the Fellowship has grown in number from a Kenyan cohort of 27 to an additional Rwanda cohort of 27.

“Rwanda continues to make significant strides at developing a sustainable, healthy, and inclusive food system. As a fellowship we welcome this opportunity to lend our voice, experience, and harness collective intelligence over a fireside chat with our peers!”, says the proud Dean.

Esther Ndungutse Mukundane

Esther Ndungutse Mukundane

Country Director, Aspire Rwanda

Esther is a Sustainable Land Use Fellow and an agriculture expert. In her current role as the Country Director at Aspire Rwanda, she oversees programmes geared towards the improvement of the livelihoods of women and youth.

Her notable achievements include setting up and serving as the first country director of Sustainable Harvest Rwanda, an NGO promoting the inclusion of smallholder women coffee farmers in the entire value chain. She also organised the first “Let’s Talk Coffee Rwanda” Conference that attracted senior government officials, retailers, NGOs and roasters from Europe and the US to discuss challenges and opportunities for smallholder farmers in the coffee value chain.

Florence Mwashimba

Florence Mwashimba

Fellow, African Food Fellowship| Founder & CEO Kigalifaam and PIMA Zero Waste Shop

Along with Eunice will be Florence Mwashimba. Florence is an Access to Nutritious Food Fellow, entrepreneur and sales and marketing specialist.

She founded Kigalifaam and PIMA Zero Waste Shop, both the first of their kind in Rwanda, to collect, sort and upcycle tonnes of recyclables in the country. She has also worked with large and small businesses as an aggregator to ensure access to affordable food products.

Notable achievements include being recognised as the Social Founder of the Year, 2021 finalist, Rwanda (Founder of the Year Awards – FOYA).

Kelvin Odoobo

Kelvin Odoobo

CEO & Founder of Shambapro

Kelvin is a Food Entrepreneurship Fellow, Agriprenuer and Agribusiness Consultant in East and Southern Africa. He is the founder and CEO of Shambapro Limited, an Agtech start-up that is helping smallholder farmers in Africa access suitable finance without traditional collateral and other value chain services on its digital platform.

His notable achievements include helping The Hive Limited, a Kenyan beekeeping start-up, to scale and expand to Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan, and Malawi.

As the Lead Consultant, he also helped H2O Venture Partners to build Ingabo Plant Health, a Rwandan social enterprise that provides solutions for farmers to reduce crop losses, increase crop yields and increase their incomes, and raise £100,000 seed funding from DFID.

Moving forward

The African Food Fellowship is increasingly being recognised as a voice in the transformation of food systems in Africa and believes that through practical, collaborative, and visionary leadership, ending world hunger on the continent is achievable.

Moving forward, the Fellowship is looking forward to even more opportunities to support as many African start-ups and SMEs as possible to scale up their solutions and contribute to their communities and economy.

Meet the rest of our amazing fellows.

About the African Food Fellowship

The African Food Fellowship is a leadership initiative for inclusive and regenerative food futures on the continent. It targets emerging leaders from the civic, public, and private circles to jointly transform Africa’s food systems and ensure equitable availability and access to healthy and sustainable food for all.

Wageningen University & Research and Wasafiri Consulting initiated this fellowship to help deliver progress promised in the 2014 Malabo Declaration, which aims to end hunger on the continent by 2025, and to promote intra-Africa food exchange through the continental free trade area.

Photo by Irina Blok on Unsplash

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Wasafiri leads in nature-positive discourse to tackle climate change; WEF “Bold Actions for Food” event

According to the Davos agenda, sustainably nourishing 9.7 billion people by 2050 requires a transformation in food systems. Unprecedented, concerted action from diverse cross-sector actors is required to evolve production, value chains, market systems, technology, and consumer demand from the local to the global level.

As part of their commitment to a transformation in food systems, the World Economic Forum, the Food Action Alliance, and partners will hold the “Bold Actions for Food” Event on March 15 – 16.

Recognising the need for concerted action from diverse cross-sector actions, this event will bring together leaders from public, private, civil society sectors, and experts who are driving action on innovative examples of systems change initiatives.

As part of this convening, Wasafiri’s Good Food Hub initiative, as well as Clim-Eat, will convene a dialogue with the Nature-Positive Innovation Coalition on March 16. Our very own SME platform that has brought together food actors who are making food more nourishing, sustainable, equitable and more resilient.

In part, the event is looking at how to raise ambitions and scale leadership action this year towards bringing Food into the centre of COP27, as well as holding discussions on how to accelerate the small businesses that are bringing nature-positive innovations to millions of farmers.

Wasafiri is giving voice to these food-preneurs and small food business owners who know the importance of making our food systems nature-positive. We want to increase the recognition of small businesses that are innovating solutions that are enhancing natural capital such as water, soil health, and biodiversity.

A wonderful example of this is Good Food Hub member Claire Baker who is the Co-founder and Director of The Toothpick project (Claire is currently a finalist in the Milken-Motsepe Prize in AgriTech).

Bringing businesses to the forefront of the conversation doesn’t just support them, it inspires us to do more too!

Join this dialogue and discuss how businesses are bringing innovations to farmers and explore how the Nature-Positive Innovation Coalition can support access to the investment, regulatory reform, technology, and commercial partnerships that will take solutions to scale.

Sign up today

This dialogue is sponsored by EIT Food.

Read some of our Climate and Nature related blogs

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