AFEX proffers solution to food system challenges in Africa

Food Network and chain specialists have harped on the need to create transformative business ideas that can increase better opportunities for food producers, ease participation for various levels of investors in supply chain activities and increase transparency and security for players on both ends of the market.

With the theme “Disrupting Agriculture Trade Infrastructure,” AFEX, in its third edition of Code Cash Crop, said there should be support for the integration of agriculture, finance and technology.

The Chief Technology Officer, AFEX, Yusuf Oguntola, said: “We believe that it is essential to nurture a culture of collaboration and innovation, especially if we are to effectively tackle some of today’s urgent agriculture challenges.”

Oguntola also added that technology would be key in promoting a platform model for agricultural trade that could focus on providing access to logistics, advisory services, inputs, and markets, which are all key to the future of agriculture in Africa.

Chief Executive Officer and co-founder, Releaf, Ikenna Nzewi, said: “It’s important to carry out a comprehensive research for solutions, especially technologies that are applicable to smallholder farmers, which should be tailored to their needs.”

CEO of Graeme Blaque Group, Zeal Akaraiwe, described how inadequate structuring is one of the setbacks facing agriculture. He said, “there are significant risks in the agricultural sector and banks even though they are called risks assets don’t really like risks and the alternatives mean is that they can deploy capital and make equivalent revenue with fewer risks and this is why they shy away from agriculture.”

Chief Operations Officer, AFEX, Akinyinka Akintunde, said: “Code Cash Crop showcases the importance of fusing technology-led solutions along with agriculture and finance to create a better, connected and sustainable future for our food systems.”

The agri-tech solution winner, Prince Achoja, believes in a customer-centric approach to innovation and aspires to build an agtech platform called “Ma’aji-Noma.”       

More than 200 submissions were made to solve the challenges in agriculture value chains, and more than N5 million prizes were awarded to the top three participants of the Ag Hackathon contest.

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