Tuesday, 22 September 2015

The Africa I dream of everyday

Photo Credit: ILRI/Stevie Mann

I have just been thinking about Africa lately. Our continent is currently at a crossroads, we can either make it or break it. It is becoming apparent to the world that the future of food production and agribusiness is strongly linked to Africa. The continent still has potential to expand area under production and to intensify production through new technologies. The developed countries are well aware of this and seem to be ready to do business with Africa. But where is the deadlock? Why is the puzzle not fitting together?

In addition to the resources advantages of good land, climate and minerals, Africa has another advantage - a burgeoning and most youthful population. While the developed world has to deal with an ageing population, Africa is carrying a 'ticking time bomb' or a demographic dividend for the continent - the youth. If these young men and women do not get jobs or fail to become true value-creating entrepreneurs, the whole continent could just explode! But if they do get the right skills to stand on the global stage, negotiate mutually beneficial world class business deals the continent could also explode, but this time in a more positive way :-). When Africa's youth get it wired in their heads that 'yes, we can build Africa' - the African continent would explode and the next century could be the continent's golden century.

The 'Africa I dream of' is one idea I am not afraid to share. Keeping it to myself will not help me or anyone else, but if anyone would jump onto it, I am guaranteed that the returns will be positive. Here we go... 'What does Africa need the most?'... money, food?... Well yes, all of that is important to help people to respond to negative shocks in the short to medium term. But I believe what Africa needs the most is 'human capital development.' Yes; you heard me right, 'human capital development.' Let's just call it HCD for simplicity.

In my perspective, HCD is NOT synonymous with education, though education is an essential element of HCD. HCD goes beyond the desk, or college graduation. HCD 'goes beyond the desk, or college graduation'? What does that mean? It means HCD includes a change in mindset and belief system. We might... but we don't always get this kind of support in the classroom or the college halls, (well I speak as far as Africa is concerned). HCD is something that should start and continues in the home and the community in which the school or college is just one part (though a very essential one). HCD is also a cultural issue, it is a continuous, multi-faceted yet targeted process of building the required skill set and belief system into the African child and equipping him and her for the global opportunity. It is the gradual development of the freedom to make informed and strategic decisions whose impacts go beyond oneself and one's immediate surrounding. HCD is about taking the African child and broadening their vision beyond the savanna, and giving them a world perspective. One of my early career mentors, Prof Rukuni, used to say, 'development is about people, helping people help themselves.' A truthful statement I have never forgotten, it actually feels so real whenever I say it or write it.

My dream for Africa in the context of a rapidly urbanizing world, is to see some young men and women decide to stay in the farming community because they 'want to' spend their lives producing quality food for the world's cities. My hope is that this nightmare will end, where the majority of African youths are in farming not by choice but by default - a fate of circumstances largely caused by an HCD gap. My dream is of young Africans who choose to take to the metropolis and build or help build technologies that solve human challenges such as poor access to health services. I dream of young men and women who will choose to code until until they make doing business easier for their fellow farmers through building systems that reduce supply chain inefficiency in Africa.

HCD will empower young Africans to choose to make Africa a better place, in ways that are unique to all of them. HCD will help us find our place. If you ever get the chance to educate an African child or youth, please do it with all your heart, you could be making the first step to taking Africa to the 'next level.' 

On the belief system as part of HCD, the African society has a huge role to play. Noone can do this for us, we have to do this for ourselves. I dream of the young African professional who chooses to say NO to corruption and chooses to put 'delivering value first, before the money.' This is the basic ethic of business... we cannot thrive sustainably without it, for 'one should not expect earn what he has not created value to exchange the money for.' Money will always follow value. I dream of the African youth who will choose hospitality before pride and make Africa the warmest and safest place to be.

Though, all these be dreams for now, I know all this is possible. It is possible when I wake up to do it and inspire you to do it. And when you do it and inspire one more; everyday we will inspire more young men and women to build this 'Africa I dream of everyday.'

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Zimbabwe’s limited fiscal space is constraining agricultural growth and development

Photo Credit: M. Granados - CIMMYT

Defining fiscal space

Fiscal space is defined by the balance between government revenue (i.e. tax), denoted by T and government expenditure, denoted by G, through time. For instance, if G < T, then there is a fiscal surplus, but if G > T, then there is a fiscal deficit. A sustained or perpetual deficit through time results in build-up of annual deficits, leading to an unsustainable high debt. With a high level of debt, the government cannot borrow on the international market, and its ability to finance future deficits, i.e. the fiscal space is limited. 

Zimbabwe currently endures very limited fiscal space since debt distress is undermining the capacity of the country to service its debt obligations. Accumulation of external payment arrears since 2000 (including interest charges) has resulted in public and publicly guaranteed debt reaching 51% of GDP and was projected to reach US$7.2 billion by December 2014 (Chinamasa, 2014).

Fiscal space is constraining agricultural growth

The country’s credit worthiness in the international community has been eroded and efforts are currently being made to reengage with the international community. While there may seem to be sufficient ground to argue that limited fiscal space has constrained agricultural growth; constraints to agriculture sector growth may emanate from a variety of angles.

However, it is to a large extent, that Zimbabwe’s limited fiscal space has affected agricultural growth and rural development. Zimbabwe has not been able to access patient capital from international financial institutions (IFIs) as well as global agricultural investment funds.

International and regional lines of credit in Zimbabwe are few and are subject to a high risk premium, reflecting the perception of Zimbabwe as high risk due to the existing external debt payment arrears and debt overhang, said Agribank Chief Executive Officer Mr S. Malaba at an Agribusiness Conference late last year.

Failure to unlock patient money

With limited fiscal space reflected by an unfavorable credit worthiness, Zimbabwe has limited opportunities to unlock “patient” capital from IFIs. The IMF had closed its Zimbabwe office for over a decade. However, possibly in response to ongoing efforts to reengage with the international community, the IMF office in Zimbabwe has since been re-opened. 

IFIs are a source of patient money which is critical for agricultural growth and rural development given the capital intensive nature of agriculture as a business, and the high risk of smallholder agriculture.

Failure to unlock innovative agriculture investment

In the recent past, agriculture investment funds have grown in Africa as a region. In 2010, 31 agribusiness investment funds were targeted at Africa, with capitalization ranging from $8 million to $2.7 billion (Miller, et al., 2010). These have different asset classes (such as commodities) and financial instruments (for example bonds, listed securities and derivatives). These include both public/donor (with philanthropic objectives) funds as well as private investment funds. 

Due to the risk associated with Zimbabwe’s limited fiscal space, private investor funds, for instance debt funds, which are the type of funds that may provide loan capital directly to agriculture may shy away from Zimbabwe. 

Credit guarantee schemes are innovative tools that are being utilized to unlock financing of agriculture especially through value chain approaches. Some credit guarantee schemes may involve financiers who will require the government to be guarantor for external agricultural financing. Limited fiscal space compromises government’s ability to guarantee credit e.g. for financing smallholder agriculture.

Debt instruments such as treasury bonds are another form of instruments that the government can use to finance agro-industry and agricultural value chains. In 2014, treasury bonds were issued by the government to input suppliers for the debt owed for inputs supplied through the RBZ quasi-fiscal activities. Limited fiscal space may compromise the government’s ability to meet the commitments to the bonds. This constraints agricultural growth. 

In countries such as Nigeria and some Asian and Latin America countries that have benefitted from developed countries’ debt relief, FDI in agriculture/agribusiness is reasonably high. In Latin America and Asia, it is as high as 78% of FDI. Though in Nigeria, the value of agriculture related FDI is proportionately low compared to total FDI, falling within single digit percentages, the country’s agricultural sector benefits from investment funds such as Fund for Agricultural Finance in Nigeria, FAFIN (Ogwumike, 2013; Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, 2014). 

Agricultural investment funds and other innovative financing instruments can play a critical role in agricultural growth and rural development in Zimbabwe, but their success requires “space” for both social and market lending facilities.

Failure to absorb external hazards or shocks 

Most rural farmers in Zimbabwe still depend on rain-fed agriculture. However, rainfall patterns are increasingly becoming erratic and less predictable. This makes smallholder agriculture extremely risky and in need of the absorptive capacity of government to ensure resilience in the event of external hazards. The majority of livelihoods depend on agriculture and the growth of the smallholder agriculture and rural livelihoods improvements can be considered key in achieving economic growth and development. Limited fiscal space however limits ability of the government to absorb the effects of shock and in turn propel agricultural growth and rural development.

Limited investments in key drivers of agricultural growth such as research and development

Research and Development (R&D) can be considered one of the key drivers of agricultural growth and rural development. The United Nations recommended a minimum threshold of spending 1% of GDP on R&D. Given a scenario of limited fiscal space government has to negotiate this with other investment priorities. In the case of some “inescapable” budget requirements which have immediate/short term implications, resources are often channeled to other priorities e.g. the “next season’s” input support programme. Lower fiscal space and sustained budget deficits may result in starving of strategic investment areas such as R&D and extension.

Other factors constraining agricultural growth and development in Zimbabwe

While there may seem to be sufficient reason to argue that limited fiscal space constrains agricultural growth and rural development, it may seem also important to consider some of the forces that may be independent of limited fiscal space but also constrain agricultural growth and rural development. 

General macroeconomic policy gaps, for instance the lack of clarity on the indigenization policy and lack of resolution on land tenure instruments such as the 99 year lease also constrain agricultural growth. For instance, there is still debate whether ownership structures are the only means of complying with indigenization regulations. This form of uncertainty shies away even domestic investment which may then find better havens elsewhere. 

Additionally the lack of resolution on the bankability and transferability of the 99 Year Leases renders complications to the functioning of domestic land markets, suffocating domestic investment and hampering productivity. Surges in the local costs (financial and time-related costs) of doing business through high transaction costs hinder growth of agricultural businesses. For instance cumbersome processes related with acquisition of licenses and registration by traders also stifles local agribusiness.

Saturday, 15 November 2014

The "Open" Secret of African Agricultural Transformation

Over the past three months, I have been in my first semester of Masters training in agricultural and applied economics, and I am yet to optimize the functions of maximizing my blogging passion and maximizing my grades all subject to a time constraint. 

After reading the transcript of a classic interview between the McKinsey Quarterly and Nobel Prize winning economist Robert Solow I thought I should come back to the blogging after a long period of silence and share what I dubbed the "open secret" of African agricultural transformation. You will realize by the end of this blog why I have called it an open secret. But first, let us start with a question:  
What really determines the differences in productivity between nations, sectors and firms?
Just as background information, Prof Robert Solow is internationally recognized for his contributions to the theory of economic growth and development. In the 1990s he worked with the McKinsey Global Institute  in some sector level studies across the globe. From the interview transcript, his view in response to the question I have just paraphrased above was that, the difference in productivity (across countries, sectors and consequentially firms) is not technology, and neither is it capital accumulation; rather, it is management, organizational behavior, how decisions are made, how tasks are allocated and I would add, how risk is managed.
 
Prof Robert Solow remarks in the interview:
"...the idea that everybody is everywhere and always maximizing profits (turns out) to be not quite right..." (emphasis mine)
Part 1 of the "open" secret: "To assume that all economic agents are naturally maximizing profit, or acting rationally is incorrect... the open secret is that 'competition' is actually the factor that spurs economic agents to do more... we have to acknowledge that competition is healthy if we wish to transform African agriculture." 

While this sounds a little like going hard on our so-called "poor" farmers and entrepreneurs whom we at times view a little too much as victims, it could be part of the secret behind a brighter, robust and sustainable growth path for our beautiful continent. But perhaps, the question in context could be, just how does competition result in transformation?  Prof Robert Solow also explains in the interview how "trailers" in an industry, nation or region actually move up to realize that inert potential and become trendsetters:
 
Part 2 of the "open" secret: The exposure to the competition of other players who are applying right practices (i.e. using the right tactics in the game), spurs "trailers" to do more and thus into higher levels of productivity.
 
Prof Robert Solow remarks again in the interview: 
"...international trade serves a purpose beyond exploiting comparative advantage. It exposes high-level managers in various countries to a little fright. And fright turns out to be an important motivation..."
Some might wonder, can African farmers stand global competition? Well, yes, African farmers can be very competitive. I have shared a few insights in this post that might be of interest in this subject. You can also learn a lot from this report. African  small farms have the potential to offer great value, for instance in supplying niche markets for healthy and more nutritious foods produced under intensive small scale management. Local agribusiness firms such fertilizer and input suppliers also benefit from healthy competition among themselves. Exposure to the practices of other firms within and beyond the country or region will spur local firms to be more efficient and produce better quality products and services.
 
Part 3 of the "open" secret: The primacy of the agriculture sector; a "productivity tipping point" 

On this point, I believe there is a lot we can learn from Jeff Bezos, the founder and CEO of Amazon one of the world's largest e-commerce companies. But before we get into the details, let me explain the last nugget from the classical interview between McKinsey Quarterly with Robert Solow in relation to our discussion. The McKinsey Global Institute studies in which Prof Solow was academic adviser, also found that wholesaling and retailing were the strongest accelerators or decelerators of productivity growth between nations and were at the time of the studies, low productivity growth sectors. However, entrepreneurs like Jeff Bezos managed to see the opportunity in these low productivity sectors and struck gold; not only for themselves but for the American nation and the world at large today. Wholesaling and retailing could have been "slow"sectors in most developed countries but also these sectors employed large proportions of the population, and this was the growth dividend, summed up by Prof Robert Solow in this way: 
"...a little improvement in the productivity of these sectors would make a large contribution to national productivity..."
Conclusion: Enhancing agricultural productivity; taking Africa beyond the tipping point

It is no longer a "hidden" secret today that the agriculture sector in Africa faces the challenge of low productivity, but in principle still employs the majority of people. When most people hear the word agriculture today, they think of either the few large scale commercial farms and estates. These have great potential as well but that is not where all the money is! Agriculture employs 65% of Africa's labor force, and where is that mostly? In small and medium scale farms whether in the rural areas or around growing rural towns and bigger cities. I would like to rephrase Prof Robert Solow's statement and say: a little improvement in the productivity of African smallholder farmers would make a large contribution to national and continental productivity, and by the way, you could make millions like Jeff Bezos did in transforming retailing in America and now in the world. Have you ever wondered what Africa's richest man is doing? Among three things, he derives his wealth from sugar and flour business, the third is cement.

Now is the time for Africa to go beyond the tipping point. Development and transformation is about growth in total factor productivity and the driver of total factor productivity is not capital accumulation, labor or natural resources. The distinction in total factor productivity between countries or firms is the spur to do more; the motivation to put the best tactics to use, i.e. leadership, management, organization, managing talent, managing risks. And the spur to do more comes from exposure to competition.

Now is the time for Africa to be bold enough to foster healthy competition, locally and externally, it is an "open" secret. It is time for African entrepreneurs and governments to see how agriculture will catapult the continent's economy from dormant potential beyond the tipping point. There is opportunity for nations and entrepreneurs in transforming African agriculture. Committing to the CAADP and creating conducive environments for competitive agribusiness to grow is key. 
 
 

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

You want to know more about the role of agricultural innovation in creating food security in Africa?

"Agricultural innovation lies at the heart of striking the opportunity lying between agriculture’s demand-side incentives and supply-side constraints. Innovation is a subject of great importance because it stimulates sustainable growth in a highly competitive market"

A snapshot of the Forum for Agriculture Research in Africa (FARA) website

Hi guys!

The Forum for Agriculture Research in Africa, FARA just launched an essay writing competition for young agriculture academics. I have submitted my essay and our essays are in the public evaluation stage where we need to mobilize many votes through Facebook. If you are on Facebook, please help me win. My essay gives a clear picture why "innovation" should Africa's priority in a dynamically changing world, marred by its challenges but full of its unique opportunities. Regardless of being food insecure and suffering from supply-side constraints, Africa has demand-side incentives for agriculture. It however takes the eyes and guts of innovators to realize the gold lying between these two "rocks".

To read and vote for my essay click on this link:
It will take you to my essay on the FARA facebook page.
At the end of my essay u will find a box to vote, just click in that box and cast your vote!

The main link to the FARA facebook page is right here:
You can also search for my essay by going through the essays on the page, but if we are friends on Facebook, just click the button that says "friends" and my essay will appear.

Remember you have one vote to use "everyday" to vote for your favorite essay! 
Also remember you can share this with your friends and encourage them to vote as well.

Many thanks!

Thursday, 2 October 2014

What distinguishes a good life from a sustainable and bright future

We have entered now the era of Sustainable Development, where the focus is not only on ensuring that people from the most marginalized parts of the world have a good life, but that they also have aa sustainable and bright future.



To help understand how a sustainable and bright future future is different from a merely good life, I thought I should remind our "valucentric" readers about the relationship between economic growth and sustainable economic development.

Defining economic development

The term development means a change over time, typically involving growth or expansion. According to (Norton, et al., 2006), development is a process with many economic and social dimensions. It is a dynamic process including not only changes in the structure and level of economic activity, but also increased opportunities for individual choice and for improved self-esteem. In the first Human Development Report, UNDP defined development as expanding people’s choices. 

Economic development therefore refers to a process of economic transformation; involving more efficient resource utilization as well as expansion of productive capacity accompanied by a sustainable and equitable distribution of the gains from such growth. 

Several theories of development such as the Mercantilists, the Classicalists, Stage of Growth proponents and Capital Accumulation theorists converge to the belief that: economic development is a transition from traditional society to a modern commercial society with improvements in people’s standards of living. 

Economic development is thus a multi-faceted phenomenon involving both growth and productivity gains as well as social and distributional efficiencies. 

Contrasting economic development with economic growth


PHOTO CREDIT: Mabel Munyuki Hungwe (PhD)
The term economic development is often used interchangeably with the term economic growth. The two terms, however related, have different connotations. Economic development requires economic growth. Economic growth is often measured by metrics such as per capita GDP growth rates. However, measuring economic development is a combinations of both measures of growth and measures of the actual distribution of wealth. Indices like the Gini inequality coefficient, or the gender disparity index, are often combined in composite measures of economic development. 

“Economic growth is a necessary but not sufficient condition for economic development.”

The difference between economic growth and development can be illustrated by the recent findings that the early 2000s have been Africa’s decade of unprecedented economic growth. For instance, six of the ten fastest growing economies globally in the early 2000s were in Africa; including Angola, Niger, Ethiopia, Chad, Mozambique, and Rwanda who registered growth of over 7%. However, this unprecedented growth has not delivered the jobs and poverty reduction that Africa has been seeking. 

Africa is off target on achieving MDG 1 of eradicating extreme poverty and hunger. This may be seen to resemble “economic growth” without “economic development”. 

Economic development focuses on concepts which include, though not limited to:

  1. productive capacity of resources and productivity of both self-employment and wage-employment 
  2. equity of income and asset distribution 
  3. social protection

To a sustainable and climate smart future post-2015!

Friday, 5 September 2014

Zimbabwe Research and Intellectual Expo (RIE) Week, 3rd to the 6th of September 2014, Part 1: All we have is what we have…

Resource efficient and portable small scale rural brooder heating system


This week has been a great week for Zimbabwe’s Sunshine City, Harare. Despite the fairly cold mornings lately, this week we have been warming up ourselves with some “hot” ideas at the Research and Intellectual Expo (RIE) currently underway at the University of Zimbabwe. The RIE is an initiative of Zimbabwe's Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education that seeks to showcase the various innovations taking place in the country's universities and colleges.

I decided to dedicate most of my time strolling through the exhibition stalls, sniffing around for some agricultural innovations, especially those that do not kill the “golden egg goose.” My search today was quite successful as I made a stop at the Midlands University stand and met one inventor showcasing what he calls the “portable brooder heating system.”

showing of the brooder at RIE exhibition
The witty inventor, Mr Chiwishi, shows off some
happy chicks in his portable small scale brooder heating
system at RIE on Thursday

The mortality challenge

.For most rural African families, commercial breeding of chickens could be a viable but yet very risky enterprise. In Zimbabwe commercial chicken breeding has become a popular urban backyard enterprise, whilst in countries like South Africa, it is a commonly large scale commercial farming business.

As a way of broadening income sources for the smallholder farmer rural farmers, commercial chicken rearing could be one avenue to increased incomes. However, some of the major challenges faced by smallholder rural farmers include poor access to markets and high mortality rates, especially those related with low temperature and high humidity. 

A resource efficient and environmentally friendly solution

While urban and more sophisticated farmers use electric heating systems, in rural areas, farmers often use fire braziers where they burn pieces of firewood in an open steel drum. The brazier initially burns outside the brooder until only red ambers are left; then the brazier is placed into the brooder.

This conventional process has negative impacts on the environment and is quite wasteful of the earth’s scarce resources. The heavy reliance of the braziers on firewood means we destroy more trees and, the fact that the brazier is initially heated out of the brooder means that some heat energy is wasted. We need a more efficient and environmentally friendly technology because for most rural farmers “all we have is what we have” and hence we need to make the most out of it. As Ghandi said in one of his famous quotes: 
“there’s enough in the world for everyone’s needs, but not enough for everyone’s greed” 
Mr Chiwishi's small scale brooder heating system is an innovation is driven by the need to come up with a “mortality reducing” and environmentally friendly solution for smallholder commercial chicken growers. According to Mr Chiwishi, mortalities of chicks can exceed 50 percent in cases where prolonged cold spells are experienced and the absence of electricity in rural areas only exacerbates this challenge. 

While the conventional braziers make use mostly of firewood, the portable invention makes use of firewood, cow dung and maize cobs.

a lump of cow dung burns with sacks of more
A lump of cow dung burns in the “drum furnace”
(i.e. the cylinder with an open cap)
of the heating system. More cow dung and maize cobs
are besides the system.
the drum furnace is where the fuel (cow dung,
firewood, cobs) is combusted.

The benefits

1. An 80 percent energy save!
The small scale brooder heating system is also said to use about 12% of the energy used by the conventional method of the braziers. There however would be need to estimate the level of emissions as well just to be certain how “Climate Smart” this technology is

2. Just wake up once...
According to the inventor, the farmer would ordinarily fuel the burner once before going to sleep and then would wake up usually once just to check and adjust the temperature. 

So in a simple way, smallholder farmers reduce mortality rates, find alternative income sources and “warm” out of poverty!

3. No fans needed, just the wind will do...
To increase the temperature, the farmer does not need any fan or complicated mechanism. The farmer simply opens the cap on the drum furnace to allow more wind and air to pass through the system. This increases the combustion and heat is transmitted through a round piping element into  the brooder. Any smoke from the combustion is transmitted safely out of the brooder through a little chimney.

The system is currently designed more smallholder farmers rearing more or less than a 100 birds.

Keep an eye on upcoming posts on the RIE...

By the way, on the market challenges, I still have a date with the “rain maker ” who will take us through how he is overcoming the market hurdles by merging digital and physical at “Mbare Musika”, (i.e. Mbare market in English). So we will definitely have that covered in one of the forthcoming blog posts, so make sure you hit the RSS button to follow this blog.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

The "60 percent" game changers for youth in developing countries and the "golden egg goose": Power Points for the Youth

The Climate Smart Journey Has Just Begun...


I have been doing some research on Climate Smart Agriculture and the youth and I thought I should just share a few "power" points today on "why the world needs more climate smarts", like you and me. I have called them the "60 percent" game changers and the "golden egg goose."

The "60 percent" game changers

"As the world needs to feed more mouths, it needs to create more jobs; this convergence of events is making agriculture not only an option for youth employment and entrepreneurship, but a very viable one"
In my research I bumped into three 60 percent statistics that point to possible game changers for the youth in developing countries. I have summarized them in the phrase above and I call them the three "60 percent" game changers.

Food demand growing by 60 percent

Picture by Mabel Hungwe
First, it is estimated that agricultural production will have to increase by 60 percent by 2050 to satisfy the expected demands for food and feed.

Youth make up 60 percent of developing regions' population

Accompanying this first 60 percent, is the second observation that 60 percent of the population in the 48 least developed countries, most of which are in Africa, are under the age of 24, and 40 percent are under 15. Sub Saharan Africa for instance, is considered the “youngest” region though the majority of this younger population remains unemployed and their skills and capabilities under-utilized.

Not only 60 percent of the population, but also 60 percent of the unemployed!

Third, it is also predicted that 60 percent of the continent’s unemployed are aged 15-24 years  and about 40 percent of Africa’s workforce is under the age of 23.

60 percent of total marketed food in Africa is the local urban population

Transporting food to the market: Image by IFPRI

Fourth, it is predicted that 60 percent of total marketed food in Africa is local reachable market for these bubbling young agropreneurs.

Now for today, I will leave the food in the thoughts for the climate smart entrepreneurs to find the opportunities embedded in these "60 percent" game changers. But let me dash to the story about the golden egg goose before this blog becomes too long and boring!

The golden egg goose...

The late Dr Steven Covey narrates an interesting story in his book, "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People." The story which most of you might know, is about an old man who had a goose that would produce golden eggs. With much delight and excitement that grew everyday about the golden eggs coming from the goose; this old man eventually killed the goose to take more golden eggs "out of the goose." But we all know the unfortunate part that after killing the goose, he didn't find any golden eggs in the goose. In pursuit of the product, he killed the production capacity, the goose!

Now I will leave the majority of the food in this thought for the climate smart environmentalists, but here is a short line:

In our attempt to grow more food, feed more people create more jobs, we could easily get carried away with increasing the production, while we endanger our very production capacity, our land, people ecosystems.

This is why we need Climate Smarts, i.e. global citizens who are smart about the impacts of their present day actions to produce (P) on the resilience and capability of communities and ecosystems to produce more (PC)

Winding up...

In conclusion, the youth are the main "60 percenters", i.e. they are a central part of the subject in all "60 percent" game changers. Youth are the most critical respondents to the world's Climate Smart Agriculture challenge.In spite of the food security challenges the world may face today, the youthful population in developing countries can offer a growth dividend for these regions given their dynamic and fast learning capabilities much needed in a globalizing and digitalizing society and economy.

Future food supply relies heavily on the youthful developing country populations and it is clear that agriculture in these regions must transform to meet the increasing demands.According to the WWF Pan African Youth Strategy on Learning for Sustainability :
“it is the youth who will inherit whatever problems as well as opportunities that the current generation of decision makers leave behind, the current young generation is also better equipped and more motivated than previous generations to play a role now in accelerating sustainable development approaches.”