The Africa Food Prize is the preeminent award recognizing an outstanding individual or institution that is leading the effort to change the reality of farming in Africa—from a struggle to survive to a business that thrives.
The US $100,000 prize celebrates Africans who are taking control of Africa’s agriculture agenda. It puts a spotlight on bold initiatives and technical innovations that can be replicated across the continent to create a new era of food security and economic opportunity for all Africans.
African leaders in the public and private sector have embraced the potential of agriculture to deliver a more secure and prosperous future.
And there are glimpses of the enormous progress African farmers can make when they have what they need to succeed, and how the food they produce and the income they earn can send good vibrations through the entire economy.
But much work remains to be done, millions of farmers still lack access to high quality agricultural inputs, that can grow more, with less.
Farmers continue to have difficulty accessing markets. If they are not constrained by distance, limited quantities of produce sees farmers receive low prices for their product.
Many farmers also do not have access to storage, which means they usually sell their produce at harvest time when the price is lowest, or risk having the quality of their produce slowly eroded because of poor storage technologies.
Limited technical knowledge also means farmers can be slow to adopt modern agricultural practices that are more productive, commercial and sustainable.
And with effects of climate change becoming real, this need to continue learning and adopting becomes even more important as farmers counter the increasingly challenging conditions.
The Africa Food Prize exists to reward pioneering efforts to overcome these obstacles and encourage others to follow their lead.
The Africa Food Prize began as the Yara Prize, and was established in 2005 by Yara International ASA in Norway to honor achievements in African agriculture.
The Yara Prize recognized individuals from Kenya, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Uganda, Malawi, Senegal, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, and Mozambique for their success in making African farms more productive, profitable and resilient.
Moving the Yara Prize to Africa in 2016 and rechristening it the Africa Food Prize gave the award a distinctive African home, African identity and African ownership.
The Africa Food Prize recognizes extraordinary women, men, and institutions whose outstanding contributions to African agriculture are forging a new era of sustainable food security and economic opportunity that elevates all Africans.
Building on the values and principles established by the Yara Prize, the Africa Food Prize puts a bright spotlight on achievements and innovations with transformative power that can be scaled and replicated across the continent to eliminate hunger and poverty and provide a vital new source of employment and income.
The Africa Food Prize will honor outstanding contributions within every aspect of agriculture and food production that is clearly related to combating hunger and reducing poverty in Africa.
Decisions will be based on the Prize Committee’s research into and deliberations of the nominees´ work and an evaluation of their achievements.
The Prize Committee considers the following criteria for the Prize: