Africa 2030: food and work

How to feed the growing population of Africa with a healthy diet, vital for a healthy life? And how to  generate gainful employment for the youth? These were already pressing questions before the outbreak of COVID-19, but have become even more important now.

‘Africa must feed itself’, states Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank, in their Feed Africa strategy. Or as Agnes Kalibata, special envoy for next year’s UN Food System Summit puts it: “This year has been a clear wake-up call on how interconnected we are in the world. This includes not only our health, food security & nutrition, but also our climate, environment, biodiversity, empowerment & beyond.”

In the autumn of 2020, Vice Versa publishes a series of articles on transforming African food systems to provide sufficient and healthy food to the growing population, while at the same time generating income and employment for the increasing number of young people. Our aim is to generate debate on this important topic within the Dutch international cooperation sector, running up to the parliamentary elections in March 2021.

Expect articles on the diet of the future in Africa, or how to feed the big cities. We will highlight examples of promoting regional food production and food trade. On income and employment in the food system, we will look into issues like finance for the farmer and land rights. Another article will focus on the role of digitisation in connecting farmers with consumers and suppliers. The series concludes with reflection – looking back and looking ahead to the future – on how Dutch policy and private sector, knowledge institutions and NGOs can contribute to changing food systems.

At the end of the series an online debate will be held on the theme of food and employment in Africa, and the role of Dutch organisations and Dutch policy in this, in the run-up to the parliamentary elections in March 2021.

The series is an initiative of Vice Versa in cooperation with Solidaridad, IDH Sustainable trade, Wageningen University & Research and the Food & Business Knowledge Platform and AgriProFocus, merging into the Netherlands Food Partnership this year.