Kofi Annan Foundation Opens Applications for Food Security Awards
By Yemi Olakitan
To support innovative and digital solutions in food security and agritech, the Kofi Annan Foundation has opened applications for the second edition of its Award for Innovation in Africa.
The program, organized by institutions including the Austrian Federal Chancellery and United Nations World Food Program (WFP) Innovation Accelerator, aims to boost the impact of agriculture across Africa.
Austria has long acknowledged Africa’s significant potential for promising innovations and seeks to support the continent in the best possible way during this period of growth.
The call for applications is open to any African social entrepreneur with purpose-driven enterprises, demonstrating a measurable social impact and a sustainable business model.
These solutions should align with Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2, Zero Hunger, emphasizing food security and enhanced nutrition.
Innovations should tackle one or more of the following priority topics:
Inclusion of marginalized groups in food security
Improved nutrition for women
Circular solutions and the reduction of post-harvest losses
Focus on SDG Zero Hunger, Goal 2 through technology
The recent UN report on the “State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2023” underscores the critical need to intensify global efforts in transforming agri-food systems.
This urgency arises from the persistent elevation of global hunger levels, which remain significantly higher than pre-pandemic standards.
The report estimates that between 690 and 783 million people worldwide will face hunger in 2022, with numbers continuing to increase.
Furthermore, projections indicate that almost 600 million people will experience chronic undernourishment by 2030. This highlights the substantial challenge in meeting the SDG target to eradicate hunger, especially in Africa.
Africa stands at the forefront of the digital economy with its rapidly expanding and youthful population.
Presently, the continent boasts one of the world’s highest rates of entrepreneurship, with women in Africa being twice as likely to start a business compared to their counterparts elsewhere.
Recognizing that not all societal and social issues can be exclusively addressed at the government level, there is an urgent need for digital and innovative ideas.