THOUGHT FOR FOOD CHALLENGE- An enabler for sustainable food security

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More than ever before the issue of food security is a priority for us all. Day in day out around the world researchers, scientists, policy makers and stakeholder from various sectors even outside the agriculture sphere are working hard to proffer sustainable solution to the issue of food security. They are in labs, workshops, meetings to conceptualize solution and map out way forward. Many of these ones are old and are doing these activities not just because of the 10 -30 years or less they have to live but because they are also concerned about what becomes of the future generation( young people like myself and the child unborn). They have a lingering question at heart


Have you thought of this yourself? Have you got some ideas in your head on how things can be made better? Have you been discussing this with a group of friends a week or two back? Have you wondered about how you can contribute to this burning issue even though you are just a student? I HAVE GOODNEWS FOR YOU

For the past 2 years, young people, students from around the world have gathered to pitch ideas and solution to the issue of feeding the world in a sustainable and environmentally manner. They have met at what is known as the “Thought for Food” Summit. They meet here not to just pitch, they network, prize money is won and of course they party to their success. Watch this video that highlights last year’s event

This year will not be am exception as the THOUGHT FOR FOOD CHALLENGE is again open to student teams to sign up for this prestigious competition with over 10000 USD to be won. I personally have followed the #TFFChallenge for two years and I can tell you these three things

  • It is absolutely worth all the effort
  • I have not seen a team from West Africa or Nigeria qualified to the top ten teams that are able to pitch their ideas at the #TFFSummit.
  • This year provides an opportunity for teams of students in Nigeria and West Africa to show case their ideas and get the chance to pitch their idea

So what needs to be done?

The TFFChallenge allows for university students (Undergraduate-Phd) from all field of study to explore and generate sustainable ideas that can help feed the world. Take for example in 2014 the team FoPo Food Power from the Lund University Sweden came up with the idea to convert unsellable and almost expiring food into food powder with dozens of uses including space mission, humanitarian aids and lot more. The powder has a longer shelf life than fresh produce and preserves nutritional qualities, properties and taste. This team came out as runner up and went home with $5000.

I am absolutely certain that the teaming number of youth in universities in Nigeria can definitely come up with an idea worthwhile and the TFFChallenge gives you the place to showcase it.

Here is what is needed

  • Sign up on
  • Form your team of 3-5 students from different fields,
  • Begin the TFF Challenge and develop your Project.
  • All project development and submission is due by Dec 1 2015 as finalist will be announced on the 15th of December 2015.

We all have a role as young people to contribute to the kind of future we want for ourselves and the generation to come. And this competition is one avenue to do so.

Personally I encourage all Nigerian students who are innovative and have got great ideas to team up and sign up for the TFFChallenge.

For more guidance download the student info pack here

even flat fan

GROWERS: Know your Nozzles.

More and more growers or farmers are beginning to adopt the use of Crop Protection Products (CPP) in their farming operations. These could include herbicides, insecticides, fungicides or even liquid fertilizers. To effectively use these farmers usually needs to have spraying equipment which could be a knapsack, a mechanized sprayer and for large farms boom sprayers attached to a tractor.

Sprayers have various parts and this I will discuss in another blog post. However, from my experience with farmers I have discovered that many a times the wrong kind of nozzle is used per time. What do I mean, for example a farmer is spraying an insecticide and he uses a nozzle fit for an herbicide. Let’s take a short ride to know a bit more about nozzle.  I really do hope this is helpful to one or two of my readers, if possible all of you.


Nozzles are critical in spraying. It is helps to control spray of liquid be it fertilizer or pesticides. It aids in atomization. Atomization involves the breakup of spray liquid into droplets. A nozzle also ensures that the spray liquid is dispersed in a specific pattern. Thus nozzles play a very important role in spray.


  1. Hydraulic : This basically uses water pressure as a means of transmission
  2. Gaseous : This uses air pressure
  3. Centrifugal : This uses gravitational pull
  4. Electrical : Uses electricity


Flat Fan Nozzles

flat fanThis is the appropriate nose for herbicides. It usually found on tractors and has medium droplet size. It’s not fit for knapsacks.





Flood Jet Nozzle

flood jetThis kind of nozzle is appropriate for a knapsack. It releases droplet in big size. The flood jet nozzle is very fitting for fertilizer application.




Full Cone Nozzle

full coneThis nozzle type should be used for fungicide and insecticide. It provides fine droplet when spraying






Even Flat Fan Nozzle

This is very similar to the flat fan nozzle and is fitting for herbicide spray. It is suitable for a knapsack.

even flat fan

Hollow Cone Nozzle

hollow coneThis is also used for insecticide and fungicide applications. It has a hallow spray pattern





The next time you spray be sure to you the right nozzle. It goes a long way to ensure you efficiently use your CPP or fertilizer as the case may be.

Opportunity! Masters Research Grants – Fish Trade Program in Africa

The shores of Shiroro dam in Niger State Nigeria is a fishery hub

The shores of Shiroro dam in Niger State Nigeria is a fishery hub

The WorldFish Center with the funding from the European Commission (EC) has joined efforts with AU-IBAR and NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA), to implement a programme called “Improving Food Security and Reducing Poverty through Intra-regional Fish Trade in Sub-Saharan Africa” (also referred to as Fish Trade Program). The Fish Trade Program aims to improve food and nutritional security and reduce poverty in sub-Saharan Africa by enhancing the capacities of regional and pan-African organizations to support their member states to better integrate intra-regional fish trade into their development and food security policy agendas. The Program works within the four corridors in Africa (Western, Southern, Eastern and Central) aims to deliver on the following results:

  • Generate information on the structure, products and value of intra-regional fish trade in food security in Sub Saharan Africa and make it available to stakeholders.
  • Come up with a set of recommendations on policies, certification procedures, standards and regulations, and get them well embedded in national and regional fisheries, agricultural, trade and food security policy frameworks in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Enhance the capacities for trade amongst private sector associations, in particular of women fish processors and traders and aquaculture producers, to make better use of expanding trade opportunities through competitive small and medium scale enterprises; and
  • Facilitate adoption and implementation of appropriate policies, certification procedures, standards and regulations by key stakeholders participating in intra-regional trade in the four trade corridors.

This program focuses on four main African trade corridors, in Western, Southern, Eastern and Central Africa. It is focused in three main areas namely to:

  • Strengthen the evidence base for coherent policy development at national and regional levels,
  • Support the formulation and implementation of appropriate policies, standards and regulatory frameworks to promote intra-regional fish trade, and
  • Strengthen the capacity of private sector associations, in particular of women fish traders, to enhance the competitiveness of small- and medium-scale enterprises engaged in this trade.

The Program responds to the potential of Africa’s intra-regional fish trade in addressing the region’s food and nutrition insecurity, as well as poverty reduction through wealth creation which has been overlooked and neglected in national and regional policy. As a result, intra-regional fish trade has largely remained informal, with substantial volumes traded by artisanal and small – medium enterprises, mostly by women.

African Union and its Regional Economic Communities (RECs) have therefore prioritized strengthening of regional trade and have identified fish and fish products as key commodities for investment and policy support. This is evidenced in the African Union Policy Framework and Reform Strategy for Fisheries and Aquaculture document which clearly aims to “Promote responsible and equitable fish trade and marketing by significantly harnessing the benefits of Africa’s fisheries and aquaculture endowments through accelerated trade and marketing”.

Nature of Research Grant

This research grant forms part of the mentorship program which aims at building the capacities of the youth and young professionals in Africa through active engagement in the program implementation process. This is based on the assumption that there exists huge opportunity to generate volumes of data on fish trade in Africa, and the project offers opportunity to even generate more information which can be capitalized on to inform national and regional policies at the same time bring forth academic excellence to a number of individuals who can help in contributing to the development of Africa at large if their capacities are built.


It is expected that the candidates should be from AU Member states and should have completed their course work in any of the following Universities which are participating in the implementation of the Fish Trade project;

  1. University of Abidjan, Ivory Coast
  2. University of Dakar, Senegal
  3. University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
  4. University of Douala, Cameroun
  5. University of Ghana, Ghana
  6. University of Ibadan, Nigeria
  7. Lilongwe University of Agriculture & Natural Resources, Malawi
  8. National University of Rwanda Other Universities within the regions will also be considered but priority will be given to the Universities above

The students should be pursuing masters or have proven background in the following programs; Economics, Fisheries Economics, Agriculture Economics, International Trade and other related programs.

The candidate should be willing to undertake the study in the southern corridor and parts of eastern corridor, such as Rwanda at the minimum possible cost.

Selection Criteria

The selection of candidates shall be done through a rigorous exercise, consisting of independent reviewers. The basis of selection shall be made on academic merit obtained at Masters Coursework and evaluation of content of concept note.

How To Apply

The candidates must develop a five paged concept note together with their supervisors and must have an endorsement letter from their supervisors and should include the followingkey sections;

  • Indicate the country in which the study will be undertaken
  • indicate the university of study, degree program being undertaken and indicative courses so far studied under this program
  • Clearly indicate what they are going to do and how they are going to do it (proposed methodology)
  • Linkage of academic study to overall fish trade project
  • How their project will contribute towards achievement of their national developmental goals
  • How they are going to collect data and analyze their data to ensure that the work is publishable and have an academic tone
  • Expected Results
  • An indicative budget for the whole study and workplan

Candidates shall be requested to attach transcripts from their masters course work and a letter of consent from supervisory committee.

The applications shall be addressed to

NEPAD Regional Fish Node

Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Box 219



Email: with copies to: ; ;

Cell numbers; +265999378275 and +265 999 510 796

To reach not later than 4th September 2015

Original Post Here

Sign Up ForThe August Agric-Tour To Songhai Farms


“Travel while you are young and able. Don’t worry about the money, just make it work. Experience is far more valuable than money will ever be”

Are you a farmer or an intending agriculturist? Do you have a farm and desire to upscale it to meet the current dynamics of agribusiness? Here is an opportunity to learn from one of the best in Africa.

Hadur Travel and Tour a tourism company with over 10 years experience in showcasing to people the best in agricultural practice and business from all over the world invites you to register for her next 5-day agric-tour to the Songhai Centre (Farm) located in Porto-Novo, Republic of Benin. The tour will commence from 2nd August to 6th August 2015.

Songhai Centre is a leader in sustainable agriculture. The farm practices agriculture and agribusiness in an environmentally friendly manner with over 900 hectares of farm land across the Benin. It uses modern methods of farming with diversified production. Activities on the farm range from Crop Production, Livestock farming, fish farming, and Renewable energy, Agro processing and Marketing.


Tour Date: 2-6 August 2014

Requirements and Registration:

1.Download the attached SONGHAI STUDY FORM
2. Fill and scan along with the data page of your international passport send to us or submit in person to our office.
3. Confirm your room choice and we will send you a revised quote with your areas of interest indicated on your form
4. Obtain your yellow card if you don’t have one
5. Pay your tour fee
6. Pack your bags and get ready for the travel and learning experience of a life time.
Deadline is 22nd July 2015
PRICE: Participants can choose from the following options

1. ₦70,000 3 people sharing in a dormitory room
2. ₦74,000 1 person in a room with fan
3. ₦98,500 1 person in a room with AC
4. N92,000 (Per head) in double room with TV no Internet and no hot water – COUPLES SPECIAL PRICE
5. N102,000 (Per head) VIP room with internet, TV, hot and cold water, fridge etc- COUPLES SPECIAL PRICE

Note that the fee covers return journey by executive air conditioned bus, accommodation is provided on the farm in the best single room with air condition.(VIP room for couple, single room with fan also available and cheaper double rooms for those who wish to share). For meals these 5 will be provided – dinner on arrival, 3 lunches & breakfast on departure at the European restaurant on the farm, trip to Cotonou for leisure.


All payment should be made to the details below
Name: Hadur travel & tours limited
Acct no:1013482922
Bank: Zenith bank plc

For further details and inquiry call Text or call CEO on 08033134108 or Bukky on 08086762144, you will get response in no time.

Visit: for more information and testimonials from past participants


CEO Hadur travel and tours Ltd
Suite 22 Block B G/floor
Alausa Shopping Mall , Alausa,
Ikeja ,Lagos, Nigeria.
Phone : 234-8033134108,08099350378,


Waste Management
Nigeria is a great country with lot of resources that can keep the country in a very high standard of economy. A lot of people Nigerians look at these resources and think it’s something that they can only misused and get away with. Rather we can make use of this potential and make our community a better environment for all citizens.
According to Wikipedia, “Waste management is the “generation, prevention, characterization, monitoring, treatment, handling, reuse and residual disposition of solid wastes”. There are various types of solid waste including municipal (residential, institutional, commercial), agricultural, and special (health care, household hazardous wastes, sewage sludge).”
As we know Climate Change is a big deal and a time bomb to our environment which it has eaten deep into Nigeria’s environment. We also know that the government is already faced with many things concerning the well being of the people which leads to selfish reason of mismanaging the climate change fund separated for the use of the citizen. With this position I see it as a need to call on the present government and Nigerian’s in Diasporas to all help us to call for what the country is facing.
As a Climate Change activist I am using this platform to #Call4Climate solution with a way of tapping into Waste Management opportunities. Climate change is emerging as a major challenge for every community and the basic processes of climate change are, by now, well understood the changes are set to accelerate in the future, bringing diverse, severe impacts around the world, much of the warming is due to human emissions of greenhouse gases, and the world is warming.
How do we make people feel waste management isn’t a problem but a solution to climate change?
Most people in Lagos Nigeria have no idea why there is such a fuss about waste management. People are mainly motivated by what they get in return. Once they tap into waste management, they notice all the other benefits – cleanliness, less flooding, less disease… and then they understand why it’s a good idea to carry on doing it. From a good example of a company in Nigeria called Wecyclers, they have been doing great work in making use of the Waste and recycle it to make a better society and not only that they als0 help the people to make money from it for sustainable leaving.
Waste Management can be of help to curb the issue of Climate Change and we still make a sustainable living for all. Waste management tools should be directed towards the effective mitigation of Green House Gases (GHG) and the provision of sustainable co-benefits.
Moreover, waste prevention, minimization, material recovery, recycling and reuse represent a growing potential for indirect reduction of Green House Gases (GHG) emissions, through decreased waste generation, lower raw material consumption, reduced energy demand and fossil fuel substitution or avoidance.
The most important issue for Nigeria is post-consumer waste which could be a renewable energy resource, where the value is exploited through biomass production, anaerobic digester biogas, thermal processes and even through landfill gas utilization. My dedication towards this cause also makes me to be part of different initiatives to practice what I say with my support to different organization to make this happen. Education is a key to push sustainable environment through waste management.
There are plenty of important things that we should know about waste management and disposal in order to ensure that we are safe, as well as that Nigerian’s are keeping the environment safe. It is our choices and tasks our government to know how we will dispose of waste. However it is always in our best interest to take a look at all of the options that we have available before making the choice of sustainable living.

Blog post by
Olumide Idowu
Campaigner Specialist
Climate Wednesday

Five Practical Ways Young Agripreneurs Can Get Finance


When young people think of starting an agriculture enterprise be it a farm or some other Initiatives across the value chain, one major challenge is the funding to kick start their idea. This post sheds light on practical finance options for youth

Originally posted on Agropreneurnaija:

Finance Photo credit: flickr

The fall in the price of crude oil in the international market has pushed the Nigerian economy to austerity limits. The Federal Government and other national stakeholders are now looking towards the agricultural sector as the major antidote to the austerity the country is facing. Young agripreneurs are faced with the heavy burden of obtaining capital for agricultural projects.

Listed below are some ways in which young agripreneurs can get finance for their agricultural projects.

i. Personal Savings
Young agripreneurs can obtain finance by cultivating the habit of saving. There are several businesses in the agro-allied sector that requires minimal startup capital. A very good method of generating huge capital for agriculture is by re investing any profit generated from previous agric projects. As a youth corp member, I have cultivated the habit of saving 50% of my monthly allowance for agricultural projects. It is expected that…

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Great initiative by a great team! All the best to the finalist

Originally posted on Tech4agri:

TFF logo

It’s finally here!!!!

The 2015 Thought for Food Summit takes place today and Tech4Agri will be there live! The event is held in Lisbon, Portugal a beautiful city with rich culture, and food that serves as a prominent hub for entrepreneurship & innovation.

Meet the finalists

Hundreds of teams from universities all around the world entered the TFF Challenge, each diverse, motivated and brave enough to tackle the challenge of “How to feed 9 billion people by the year 2050?” Can you imagine the ingenuity coming out of such a competition!

From improving post harvest losses with the use of thermochromic and hydrochromic labels to an alternative meat product derived from insects; from roof top and vertical farming to community action and cooperative skill development these teams have applied science, technology, communication and simple innovation to create amazing ideas that can certainly contribute to solving this global problem of food availability and access.


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