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The potentials of the Diaspora in the development of the African agribusiness

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Francois Stepman (PAEPARD)
African Diaspora Agro Food Forum 2018
25th April 2018
Bouchout Castle, Botanic Garden Meise Belgium

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The potentials of the Diaspora in the development of the African agribusiness

  1. 1. AFRICAN DIASPORA AGRO FOOD FORUM 2018 25TH APRIL 2018 BOUCHOUT CASTLE, BOTANIC GARDEN MEISE BELGIUM The potential of the Diaspora in the development of the African agribusiness Lessons learned from PAEPARD
  2. 2. PAEPARD Partners
  3. 3. 20 June 2017. Brussels. International Forum on Women and Trade. Event organised by DG Trade of the European Commission and the International Trade Center (ITC). “The Diaspora is very critical for the agricultural development of Africa”
  4. 4. Extracts from The Food Bridge vzw event abstract 2016: Many in the African diaspora communities across the globe are still actively engaged with their home countries through economic, cultural, social, political and even religious links. For many and their descendants, it is not just enough to be successful in foreign lands, they also want to make positive contributions to their home land and those left behind. For the African diasporas, eating ‘home’ food is an important part of their daily lives in different parts of the world. There are many ‘African shops’ stocked with food grown in the continent in different cities in the developed countries. Thus insuring that there is a sustainable agriculture, producing safe food in Africa is also of importance to many in the diaspora, as well as a continuous flow of ‘home’ food from africa to the different African diaspora communities.
  5. 5. PAEPARD supported in 2011 the creation of the European chapter of the Association of African Agricultural Professionals in the Diaspora, or AAAPD-E. In 2011 FEBIO was created: Forum for Ethiopian Biotechnologists in order to link all Ethiopian Biotechnologists at home and abroad. In 2012 PAEPARD sent a questionnaire to 9 diaspora associations in 4 European countries: France, UK, Italy, Belgium. Only one association replied (Sunugal Association: Senegal/Italy). One of the questions was: Which could be the impact of a partnership research program involving Diaspora members and researchers in the Country of origin? As such the questionnaire did not address research needs from the diaspora related to processing food from their countries of origin for import to Europe.
  6. 6. Translate the needs into research questions and identify funding opportunities 1000noyaux, partner of ColeACP presses oil from mango kernels which would otherwise be wasted in the RUNGIS/Paris fruits and veg market. Research focus: Innovative use of mango waste in cosmetics
  7. 7. The food economy is the biggest employer in West Africa accounting for 66% of total employment. While the majority of food economy jobs are in agriculture, off-farm employment in food-related manufacturing and service activities is increasing as the food economy adapts to rapid population growth, urbanisation and rising incomes. Rural-urban linkages and rural employment diversification, which are related to the agricultural transformations that are reshaping this sector across four broad segments of activities: agriculture, processing, marketing and food-away-from home. Agriculture, Food and Jobs in West Africa OECD, April 2018. 32 pages
  8. 8. Pierre Thiam is Co-founder of Yolele Foods, (based in New York) Thiam grew up in its capital, Dakar, surrounded by bright, flavorful ingredients and passionate home cooks. His debut cookbook celebrates the art of creating family meals using organic, local produce and farm-fresh meats and seafood. An accessible and delicious introduction to the next big thing: African cuisine. “Fonio is a gluten-free ancient African supergrain with 3 times the protein, fiber and iron of rice. Senegal is a multicultural country with culinary influences from all over the world” (28/03/2018, Kigali, Pierre Thiam)
  9. 9. New policy considerations are emerging for designing targeted employment strategies that leverage the links between agricultural productivity, off-farm employment and rural-urban areas and that ensure inclusiveness, particularly for youth and women. “Job creation has not kept pace with the rapid rise in the workforce—leading to economic stagnation and disillusionment, increased pressure for migration, and social unrest.” “A transformed agricultural sector will increase economic opportunities for young people and help ameliorate the global migration crisis.” There is a need for another more positive narrative on migration: The potential of the Diaspora in the development of the African agribusiness Youth for Growth: Transforming Economies through Agriculture, Chicago Council on Global Affairs, March 2018, 154 pages
  10. 10. Using the Nigerian migrants in Belgium as a case study in her research, Dr Maureen Duru presented a convincing argument about the importance of food to the identification modes of African diasporas. The book gives a historical account of food in Nigeria and in the diaspora by tracing the evolution of Nigerians migration to Belgium, the changes African migrants have brought to the country and also their experience in Belgium. BigPicNic consortium: Bringing together the public, scientists, policy-makers and industry to help address the global challenge of food security (23-25 November 2017. Brussels. Meise Botanical Gardens) Diaspora , Food and Identity by Dr Maureen Duru.

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