AGRITECH West Africa Event

The Mastercard Foundation Fund for Resilience and Prosperity recently participated in AgriTech West Africa (AWA), held from 19-21 March in Accra, Ghana. AWA is an exhibition that covers the entire agricultural value chain under one roof. Diverse companies showcase various product segments, including agrochemicals, agricultural technology, irrigation, biofeeds, food processing and packaging technologies, food innovation, and processed and packaged food & beverage items.

The exhibition brought together agribusiness SMEs from different countries to interact and network with Ghanaian and West African businesses directly and indirectly linked to the sector. This included representatives from agribusiness sectors, commercial and small farmers and farmer groups, food & beverage industries, importers, distributors, wholesalers, retail chains, and supermarkets dealing with foodstuffs and agricultural items.

The Fund's Portfolio Lead, Joseph Sawe, Grants Associate, Felix Muia, and Communications Associate, Kelly Ochieng, attended the conference and were able to raise awareness about the Fund and the open Agribusiness Challenge Fund call for proposals among relevant stakeholders. The Fund management team engaged with various audiences and potential agribusiness SME participants.

Joseph Sawe, Fund Portfolio Lead, made a presentation during the conference and introduced the Fund, outlining its thematic areas, focus countries, and program interventions. Additionally, he presented on the recently launched Agribusiness Challenge Fund, explaining the eligibility and selection criteria. He encouraged interested and potential participants to visit the Fund's website to apply.

The Fund representatives also maintained an exhibition booth, offering further information and facilitating one-on-one discussions with interested parties. The booth provided guidance on pre-registering and applying to the Agribusiness Challenge Fund on the Fund's website.

Conference discussions centred around the importance of the food value chain. Participants explored how a successful value chain can lead to profit returns for food distributors and agricultural producers, while also generating social benefits through values-oriented food production and marketing.

In conclusion, the event provided a valuable opportunity to amplify the Fund interventions and encourage potential participants within the region to apply for the Agribusiness Challenge Fund. The team were able to add to the database of prospective applicants, connect with potential partners and technical assistance service providers for the Fund.