Connectivity – meeting the rising food production demand in African agribusiness

According to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization estimates, the projected global population will reach 9.1 billion by 2050. To meet that demand, global food production would have to increase by 70%.

In Africa, business leaders in the agricultural sector are already taking steps to ensure that their technological infrastructure allows productivity to accelerate at these necessary rates, with results that benefit business and consumer alike.

As an industry, agribusinesses are one of the fastest adopters of new technology. However, connectivity between the varied and disparate systems remains a challenge for those seeking even more value. Interoperability between the widespread number of applications and ERP systems (Enterprise Resource Planning) is essential. For all businesses to flourish, they must be able to communicate and conduct transactions smoothly and simply.

“A great number of progressive businesses in the agriculture supply chain have not fully established connections between their new and older technologies at the same rate as other industries and risk missing out if they don’t seize the new capabilities provided by advances in connected systems and tech,” said Peter Leppan, Regional Director, EMEA at Proagrica.

“Proagrica has played a major role in spearheading connectivity between agricultural businesses, and our drive towards 100% connectivity is about data solutions that boost value and efficiency across the supply chain. Following logically on from connectivity is what is actually done with that acquired data. Everything in Ag – from cows to tractors – produces data. Connecting that data in a way that can provide insight and add value to your business is what we focus on.

In 2017, the African Centre for Economic Transformation (ACET) released its “Agriculture Powering Africa’s Economic Transformation Report”, in which the need for interlinked supply chains was directly highlighted as a core necessity for a successful industry:

“Agricultural transformation incorporates two main processes; transforming or modernizing farming by boosting productivity and running farms as modern businesses – and strengthening the links between farms and other economic sectors in a mutually beneficial process, whereby farm output supports manufacturing (through agroprocessing), and other sectors support farming.”

Global food demand may be rising, but African agribusinesses are well placed to rise to the challenge. Focusing on robust digital solutions enables businesses of all sizes across the supply chain to drive profits and growth.

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