This move will accumulate research for scientists in Africa, who can then work out Africa’s challenges in the food system.
Some of these challenges include harsh weather conditions caused by changing climate. Others are lack of market, low technological uptake, limited land for production and declining soil fertility.
These challenges have led to issues like famine, malnutrition, food wastage and loss among others.
Dr. Vera Songwe, a member of the Africa Food Prize Committee made the call during the unveiling of the Africa Food Prize winner, Erick Yirenkyi Danquah. This is happening at the ongoing Africa Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) in Kigali.
An official from Corveta, one of the sponsors of the award since 2019 re-echoed the call. He said there is a need for more research in Africa. This is to find solutions to challenges faced by the food system.
The Africa Food Prize is the preeminent annual award that recognizes outstanding individuals or institutions that are leading the effort to change the reality of farming in Africa.
Eric Yirenkyi Danquah’s outstanding expertise, leadership and grantsmanship skills led to the establishment of West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI). It is a world-class center for training plant breeders in Africa for Africa.
He founded the WACCI in 2007 at the University of Ghana. He aimed at training a new generation of plant breeders to develop improved varieties of staple crops in West and Central Africa.
The institute attracted over $30 million of research and trained over 120 PhD and 49 MPhil students in Seed Science and Technology.
This led to over 60 improved seed varieties, including superior maize hybrid varieties. These will help boost yield for farmers and contribute towards food and nutrition security.
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