President of African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) Agnes Kalibata has revealed that Africa needs to strengthen regional trade to achieve sustainable and resilient food systems.
In a statement issued in Abuja on Monday, she also observed that bolstering regional trade would boost a system that will meet the health, environmental, social, and economic aspirations of people living in rural and urban areas.
Kalibata, also an envoy to the 2021 UN Food Systems Summit, said that it had become imperative for the continent not to relent in its effort to transform food systems for the benefit of everyone.
According to the statement, we need food systems that are equitable, sustainable, resilient, and capable of meeting the global challenges of malnutrition, poverty, and climate change as well as be responsive to emerging and unforeseen challenges such as those posed by the COVID-19 pandemic,’’ she said.
She also announced that the Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) programme, funded by the African Development Bank for the purpose of boosting productivity and make Africa self-sufficient in key commodities, would convene a high-level session on “Agricultural Technologies for Feeding the Cities” at the 10th annual summit of AGRF in Kigali.
“The session will hold on September 8 where TAAT is expected to use its values to drive the actions required to overcome the major challenges affecting African agriculture in food production and others development issues.
She noted that the summit with the theme “Feed the Cities, Grow the Continent: Leveraging Urban Food Markets to Achieve Sustainable Food Systems in Africa’’, would be co-hosted by Rwanda and the AGRF partners group.
The statement said further that the session would bring to fore, the strategic linkage between research and delivery as well as TAAT’s success stories in feeding African cities through its wheat revolution, intensification of cassava production and commercialization, and building the capacity of African farmers through technology outreach.
She said that it would address innovative options for accelerating African agricultural transformation in a post-COVID-19 pandemic era through the deployment of proven agricultural technologies and partnerships capable of bringing food security to African cities and rural communities.