The 1st Africa Post-Harvest loss congress was launched on Tuesday, January 17, 2017 at Norfolk Hotel.
Chief Guest, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Willy Bett, speaking during the launch urged innovators and researchers to engage farmers with the technological solutions and innovations, who need it most.
Mr. Bett urged stakeholders and the private sector to step in and help farmers deal with the post harvest loss of farm produce. He noted that Africa should be able to feed her people. “By 2050, the world will have a population of 9 billion people. If we continue losing food, we shall not be able to feed ourselves. I call upon all the stakeholders to help farmers improve food production and deal with post harvest loss of farm produce”, he said.
On his part, the Rockefeller Managing Director, Mamadou Biteye, noted that one third of the world’s food never makes it to the table. Food loss and food wastage have far serious impact than food security. He urged stakeholders to address the global challenge that affects both the common man and the multinationals. He noted that streamlining the supply can be a solution to the food loss menace. Other measures suggested include embracing technology and developing access roads to the market.
The University of Nairobi Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Peter Mbithi, noted that the Universities exist to teach, learn and offer consultancy services. The University of Nairobi will be leading from the front in offering solutions that impact the society and more specifically offer solutions to farmers to handle post harvest loss.
Prof. Mbithi took the opportunity to thank the partners to the event: Coca-Cola, USAID, Dangote Group of Companies, SNV and Rockefeller Foundation among others.
The post harvest congress will be held in March, 28, 2017 at the Safari Park Hotel, Nairobi. The event will highlight technologies and solutions to deal with post harvest food loss.