Sweet potato: Stakeholders to discuss profitable investments

Sweet potato: Stakeholders to discuss profitable investments

Sweet potato: Stakeholders to discuss profitable investments

by September 30, 2015 0 comments

Between 29 September and 1 October, this year, over 100 global participants will convene in Kigali, Rwanda for the 6th Annual Sweet potato for Profit and Health Initiative meeting. The meeting will be opened officially at 11.00 am on September 29 by Geraldine Mukeshimana, the Rwandan Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources at the Hotel Villa Portofino.


On October 1, the ‘I Love Sweet potato – Nkunda ibijumba Exhibition’ will be held at the same venue. The exhibition will show the public and potential investors how to use sweet potato in their manufacturing processes for various products.


Micronutrient deficiency is a serious public health problem in many developing countries, but unlike wasting, it is often difficult to recognise and thus referred to as Hidden Hunger. Orange-fleshed sweet potato (OFSP) has the potential to provide a rich dietary source of vitamin A that can significantly reduce vitamin A deficiency among vulnerable populations (particularly young children and lactating mothers) at the community level in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).


The theme of this year’s meeting is ‘Together, 10 million by 2020’. This refers to the overall goal of the Sweet potato for Profit and Health Initiative which is to reduce malnutrition and increase incomes among at least 10 million sub-Saharan African households through improved varieties of sweet potato and their diversified use by 2020.


Scientists and experts, government representatives, academics and donors from the agriculture, nutrition and development communities from 14 sub-Saharan countries and guests from Europe, Asia, Northern America, and Latin America will present and discuss progress in sweet potato science and delivery along the entire sweet potato value chain and showcase innovations and impact case studies in agriculture, nutrition and health innovations and outline the state of sweet potato investment in sub-Saharan Africa.


During the meeting, the new-look Sweet potato Knowledge Portal will be re-launched. The portal is a user-driven online platform that provides an arena where sweet potato actors meet virtually and is a single access point for discovery, acquisition and sharing of information about sweet potato research and project activities in sub-Saharan Africa.


Highlights of the I Love Sweetpotato – Nkunda ibijumba Exhibition, which will open to the public from 11 am to 4 pm includes a ‘Best Booth’ competition, delicious sweetpotato products for tasting and a display and demonstration of innovative sweetpotato products and ideas on display. The guests of honour at the exhibition will be the Director General of Rwanda Agricultural Board, Louis Butare, Barbara Wells, the Director General of International Potato Center and Yemi Akinbamijo, the Director General of the Forum for Agricultural Research for Africa (FARA). Scientists and experts (including senior representatives of government and development research organisations), as well as direct project beneficiaries and the general public will share their views on diverse aspects of the role of sweet potato interventions in agriculture, nutrition, and health.


Source: BusinessDay