By James Nyaigoti
The Government of Kenya, through the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development, and the African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF), have today announced that AATF Executive Director, Dr. Canisius Kanangire, the inaugural African Conference on Agricultural Technology (ACAT) will take place in Nairobi, Kenya from 30 October 2023 to 3 November 2023.
Kenya will be the first country to host ACAT.
ACAT will highlight the centrality of Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) in fostering agricultural transformation in Africa. “As a country, we are pleased to co-host the inaugural ACAT 2023 and are honored to welcome to Nairobi the global, regional and local community to this important forum and look forward to discuss actionable solutions to the challenges facing the sector that will also drive change and foster growth,” said, Mr. Phillip Harsama, Kenya’s Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development. “The conference comes at an opportune time when the continent is struggling to feed its people and climate change is posing serious challenges to our collective prosperity,” he added.
ACAT will serve as the premier platform for advancing African agricultural technology transfer and advocating for the uptake of innovations. The 2023 Conference will put a spotlight on emerging innovations within the agriculture technology sector.
It will bring together government representatives, industry thought leaders, policymakers, technical experts, private institutions, farmers, women, and youth across the globe to discuss and define practical actions and solutions to the challenges of technology access and use faced in the agriculture sector. H.E.
Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, former President Federal Republic of Nigeria and AATF Ambassador for Agriculture Technology in Africa expressed support for the conference, noting that agriculture plays a pivotal role in Africa’s economic agenda, contributing significantly to employment, food security, and economic growth.
“ACAT will provide an opportunity for stakeholders to “walk the talk” and move beyond discussions about new technologies to embracing and adopting them,” said the former President. The AATF Executive Director, Dr. Canisius Kanangire, noted that ACAT will highlight the centrality of STI in fostering agricultural transformation, especially in addressing key challenges facing African farmers. “Often the role of STI in agriculture and especially innovative technologies has not been emphasized. ACAT is the opportunity to fully showcase and celebrate STI’s contribution towards enhancing food security and livelihoods to encourage dialogue and innovation,” said Dr. Kanangire, adding that ACAT will intensify efforts to forge partnerships with like-minded organizations working in the agriculture technology sector and provide opportunities for stakeholders to share information on new and emerging agricultural technologies.
“AATF has been at the forefront of facilitating access, development, and commercialization of agricultural technologies, and this conference will help to put a spotlight on the numerous game-changing innovations that have been developed and highlight opportunities to address the multiple stressors facing the sector due to population growth, climate change, and other factors,” He pointed out. Dr. Kanangire further stated that ACAT will provide a unique platform to discuss barriers to technology transfer and propose strategies for transforming existing technologies into super Next Generation technologies capable of enhancing productivity and effectively addressing the challenges faced by African farmers.
AATF has dedicated itself to promoting innovative agricultural technology transfers that address farmer productivity constraints, working with partners across the continent to access 24 innovative and cutting-edge agricultural technologies worth over US$650 million spread across 24 countries and reaching 4.8 million smallholder farmers with new interventions during the last five years.
For more information, visit: the ACAT 2023 Conference website.