The Platform for Agricultural Risk Management (PARM) has called on African governments to institutionalise Agricultural Risk Management (ARM) system by integrating strategies and investments into national agricultural policies.
That, PARM noted, would stimulate productive and sustainable investment across the food and agricultural value chain to ensure food and nutrition security, and help reduce hunger and poverty.
Mrs Francesca Nugnes, Capacity Development Specialist at PARM, said this at the just ended Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) 2022 Regional Conference in Accra.
The conference had a session on climate finance and risk management for African Agriculture and another on connecting ecosystems actors for West Africa female entrepreneurs.
It was organised in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal and Fishery Resources of Burkina Faso and the Ministry of Livestock and Animal Protection of Senegal.
Mrs Nugnes noted that food and agricultural markets in Africa were affected by several macro-economic challenges, which had become more prevalent because of climate change.
They include oil price shocks, disease outbreaks, and adverse weather events, such as floods and droughts.
Therefore, she said, there was the need for governments across the continent to institute policy reforms and implement them effectively to ensure that the underlying approaches to risk management were addressed to make the sector resilient.
She called for a dialogue among stakeholders, including academics, producer organisations, financial institutions and governments to nurture and sustain ARM tools.
Dr Fatou Ka, Director of the National Training Centre for Livestock and Animal Industries Technicians in Senegal, spoke on the knowledge and information sharing.
He noted that it was important to raise awareness among small farmers and their organisations on agricultural risk management both at the local and national levels.
The Director said: “In Senegal, for example, information sharing is done by the Agricultural Advisory Office through agricultural and rural Advisors who are members of the (LDC).
“The sharing of information on agricultural risks is not only done through the LDC but also through other bodies such as the Village Committee, Community Radio, and Women Associations who support these efforts by relaying information to their bases.”
Mrs Francine Ilboudo, the Head of the Department for Partnership and Private Investments in the rice sector, cited the example of Burkina Faso, where the Government had made ARM a national priority.
She said that had been done through the National Council for Emergency Relief and Rehabilitation (CONASUR), created in 2004, and the creation of the multi-risk contingency plan (2009) and the contingency plans regional (2012).
The programmes adopted strategies for the prevention and reduction of the disastrous effects of natural disasters as well as mainstreaming climate resilience and disaster risk reduction actions.
By Francis Ntow, GNA