According to the Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT), the programme is exploring technologies to improve agricultural productivity in Africa and the edge closer towards attaining zero hunger in the continent.
The programme, an offshoot of the African Development Bank (AfDB) as part of its Feed Africa initiative, has recorded huge successes since its inception, says Dr. Chrysantus Akem, Programme Coordinator of TAAT.
Dr Akem who revealed this at the sixth African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE) conference held in Abuja, said “The very first challenge we had was to create the awareness that we needed to get all the technologies that we have in agriculture and put them into use so that we can transform agriculture in Africa.
“All the technologies were all in bookshelves, some in publications and we keep lagging behind, we are not going very far in terms of productivity in the various commodities within Africa.” He said.
Dr. Akem stated that the objectives of the programme are to intervene in 18 agricultural value chains. He said nine of the commodities were selected for the first phase, while the other nine would be targeted at the second phase.
He remarked, “The programme is targeted at 18 value chains or commodities, and it was very clear that we cannot start with all of them at the same time, so we selected nine, to begin with among which are cassava, maize, beans and we have aquaculture, we have livestock, basically in the first phase, we focused on these nine commodities.
“Then the second phase is coming up, we are right now formulating it and we brought in the other nine commodities that are still pending, and that include soybean, vegetables.
“We are trying to see how we can make an impact by looking at all these commodities across the given institutions and given countries.”