At the African First Ladies summit, second panel discussion topic underway. The discussion is on Subsistence to Security: Providing Opportunities & Improving Agricultural Outcomes for Female Farmers
Moderator: Dr. Jemimah Njuki – Global Coordinator, Pathwaysband CARE Tanzania’s Women in Agriculture Program
Martin Fisher – Co-Founder and CEO, KickStart International
Josephine Okot – MD Victoria Seeds Ltd
Mary Rono – Dairy Farmer – Land O’Lakes Beneficiary Kenya
Sherry-Lee Singh – Project Manager, Massmart Supplier Development Fund.
Research shows that the majority of those who produce, process, and market Africa’s food are women. Specifically in Sub-Saharan Africa, women contribute 60 to 80 percent of the labor in both food production for household consumption and for sale. While women are at least half of the workforce in agriculture, access to resources such as land, credit and other services in rural communities continue to be limited, and inequality in different agriculture value chains is a substantial challenge. A Food and Agriculture Organization study found that national agricultural output could increase by as much as four percent if female farmers were granted equal access to resources like land and fertilizers. This panel addresses the most effective and innovative strategies to overcoming gender disparities and increasing women’s roles in agricultural development. Specifically, this panel highlights programs and technologies that are providing access to consumer markets, improving farming techniques, and using technology to increase yield and accelerate productivity. Finally, the panel highlights how governments, non-profits, and corporations can move the focus on agriculture beyond development and towards business growth, economic opportunity and food security.
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