14 June 2016. Africa Agribusiness Insights Survey 2016. Including Nigeria, Tanzania, Kenya, Zambia, Ethiopia, South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Malawi – the publication provides insight on a range of issues, including risk management, cross-border expansion and technological innovation.
While the majority of respondents (70.6%) had not invested in African countries other than their own, 58.8% of participating company bosses see investment in other African territories as an opportunity for expansion. Zambia, Botswana, Tanzania and South Africa are the top four countries in which they are planning to invest.
The single greatest challenge to cross-border expansion, according to the CEOs, is inefficient and bureaucratic governments. Other challenges include high employee turnover (a challenge first cited this year), policy instability, cross-border regulatory requirements and corruption, crime and theft.
Technology: a challenge and an opportunity
The greatest opportunity for technological innovation, according to respondents, is the availability of real-time data, with others including systems integration, forecasting demand and managing inventory, and the ability to manage budgets despite high and fluctuating costs.
The report notes that,
“The agriculture industry is reaching a level of precision that was almost unimaginable just a decade ago. With the existing technologies in place, the availability of real-time data could provide more efficient decision-making and a proactive farming approach that can be tremendously valuable.”
Despite most agribusinesses struggling to finance new technology and find solutions designed to fit their specific needs, just over 88% of those surveyed expect to implement a technology-related project in the next year. The survey focusses on three key technologies: the use of drones for agricultural purposes, artificial intelligence (AI) farming and software packages.
Only 47.1% of respondents would invest (35.3%), or had already invested (11.8%) in AI farming capabilities. The report notes that this may be due to prohibitive costs, misperceptions and a limited knowledge among farmers. However, more than three-quarters of the respondents expect AI farming will make a major contribution to increasing capacity in Africa in the next decade.
The best way to maintain a competitive edge and stay ahead of your peers is to embrace technological innovation. We recognise the importance of seizing the opportunity to create new technologies through innovation. Technology should contribute to creating an enabling environment in which businesses can reach their strategic goals faster and more efficiently. Through this publication, we endeavour to share information on technological innovation that could impact the world in which agribusinesses operate, enabling them to make smart decisions that will position them properly for the future.
The use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones for management of crops, livestock, fisheries, forests and other natural resource-based activities represents a new technological frontier and opens up a range of exciting opportunities. The latest issue of ICT Update is dedicated to the use of this technology and associated systems in different parts of the world. This issue – available online and in print format in both English and French has been published in collaboration with Esri. It includes 12 articles, one interview and a section featuring selected online resources on the topic. Articles range from the use of UAVs to design an irrigation scheme in Nigeria, to feeding a locust monitoring scheme, from documenting illegal land occupancy in Panama to assisting smallholder farmers in monitoring their crops in Eastern Africa, and more.
French: ICT4Ag (ICT Update) 82 : Les drones au …