The Government of Uganda (GOU), through the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) received a 150m dollar fund from the World Bank towards the cost of the Agriculture Cluster Development Project (ACDP). The project objective is to raise on-farm production, productivity, and marketable volumes of Beans, Rice, Maize, Cassava and Coffee, in specified geographical clusters, making up 42 districts.
During its implementation, the project is met with various challenges such as; the lack of a farmer register, low farmer enrolments onto the program, lack of mechanisation services such as tractor hire, lack of institutional capacity to train individual farmers, lack of systematic pest and disease management among others. These challenges have slowed the progress of the project towards the realisation of the development objective. It is envisioned that interventions such as Disruptive Agricultural Technological (DAT) solutions can help turn around the project performance, through automation of key business processes along the value chain, as well as improving service delivery to the intended project beneficiaries. MAAIF, through the ACDP has thus organised a DAT Innovation challenge, in which firms and Individuals with agricultural digital solutions that could mitigate a challenge or several within the project scope, will be showcasing their products to a panel of judges.
Objective of the Innovation Challenge
The overall objective of the Innovation Challenge is to explore opportunities offered by Disruptive Agricultural Technologies (DATs) to address the challenges identified in the implementation of the ACDP.
Interested start-ups, entrepreneurs, and businesses with a functional, and market-tested digital solution in any of the challenge areas identified below;
Challenge 1: Advisory and Information for Agricultural Productivity
- Solutions for profiling farmers and increasing registration and enrolment
- Solutions for delivering agricultural extension and advisory for beneficiary farmers on the subsidy program
- Solutions for delivering digitally enabled equipment hire services, such as tractor hire
- Solutions for real-time alert of pest and diseases, and early warning
- Solutions offering soil productivity information, satellite imagery as well as remote sensing
Challenge 2: Market linkages
- Solutions for establishing input and output market linkages
- Solutions for bulking of demand for imports of adapted fertilizer and agrochemical supply through PPPs
- Solutions for strengthening of the agro-input dealers’ distribution network and quality control systems
Challenge 3: Financial Inclusion
- Solutions for input credit e-wallet and insurance among other
Challenge 4: Data
- Data and statistics
- Integrated Management Information System
All applicants that responded to the EOI (attached) that ran in the New vision on the October 07, 2019, will be evaluated for compliance with the eligibility criteria as defined in the advert. The successful candidates will then be profiled and prepared to participate in the challenge by a contracted firm; The Innovation Village (TIV), in a one-day boot camp
The event will be organized by MAAIF, supported by the World Bank, through a contracted events management firm; Talent Africa Limited. The shortlisted candidates will show case their products to a carefully selected panel of judges that include technocrats from the government technical departments, academia and the private sector. Innovations will be evaluated in accordance with a judging criterion developed by TIV in collaboration with MAAIF and the WB. Winners will be selected from each of the challenge areas, and will be rewarded in the following manner;
- All the selected participants will be receiving a certificate of recognition, for being a part of the event.
- A medal will be rewarded to the first 3 qualifiers in each of the challenge areas.
- The ACDP will procure the DAT solutions that will be evaluated as fit to solve the implementation challenges of the program
A timeline (attached), leading to a successful event has been prepared and is on course. The timeline activities include; preparation of the innovators, publicity and communication aspects, as well as the event’s deliverables.
 “Disruptive Agricultural Technologies (DATs) are digital and non-digital innovations that enable smallholder farmers to leapfrog their current constraints and improve their yields, incomes, nutritional status, and climate resilience. These technologies range from mobile apps, to digital identities for farmers, to solar applications for agriculture, to portable agriculture devices, to bio-fortified foods.”
More details Disruptive Agricultural Technology – Brief