Agribusiness skills needed in Africa REMIX
Practical Agribusiness skills are needed to move Africa forward.
We in Africa are aware of what is required of us. We read widely and have unlimited access to information regarding our individual countries, other African nations and the Global scenario as well. The MDGs set by the UN are a clear pointer of where we should all go and we are all in agreement - but what are we lacking?
Initiative and drive in the right direction is what is lacking. Most so called farmers in Africa do not have the skills to carry out good farming activity. Therefore my idea is based on the need to impart skills as a priority.
Set up community based training centres which are not dificult to set up as volunteer farmers can provide the small plots that are needed to provide such facilities. Since the training centres will be run for the communities, by the communities not much capital will be required. The trainees (especially the youth who are unemployed) and trainers will be coming from their farms.
Skills needed include;
- Crop and soil management
- Water harvesting and resource management
- Animal husbandry
- Agro forestry skills
- Marketing of produce
The above areas are being addressed by the farmers but without the knowledge and foresight of how the activities will affect their farms in the long run. Because of the high population in the rural areas, labour intensive methods like biointensive agriculture can be implemented easily - I have witnessed transformation of farms from low yielding to high yielding facilities while at the same time becoming an environmental conservation showcase using this method.
An example of a training facility which can be used to train the trainers can be found at the following link http://www.mhacbiointensive.org/
Replication of this idea throughout rural Africa will go a long way in aiding the achievement of MDG 1 through to MDG 7 which are mainly centred aroung Food, Health and Environment. As for MDG 8, African Rural Connect is already working towards it.
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