The Biovision Africa Trust (BvAT) Executive Director’s Mission to Uganda

Between the 4th and 8th of March 2019, the BvAT ED Dr. David Amudavi was in Uganda on a partner identification mission. BvAT is currently seeking to establish partnerships with organizations in Uganda to collaborate with on the BMZ-GIZ sponsored project “Knowledge Centre for Organic Agriculture in Africa” in Uganda. This is a project that will be supporting three centers of excellence in organic agriculture in Africa (Eastern Africa, Southern Africa and West Africa) to enhance production in line with organic principles and standards and stimulate market linkages. BvAT will oversee the East African center and hence the need for this mission to identify collaborators. On this trip, Dr. Amudavi was armed with a meticulously developed checklist of requirements to look for in identifying the most appropriate partners. Some of them were; passion and commitment for (ecological) organic agriculture, availability of sound administrative and financial systems and support infrastructure such as office space. The list is long, but these were some of the paramount requirements. Dr. Amudavi met and held […]

The BMZ supported Knowledge Centre for Organic Agriculture in Africa Project launched

During the launch of the Knowledge Centre for Organic Agriculture in Africa at Biofach in Nurnberg, Germany on 15 February 2019, Dr. Stefan Schmitz, Deputy Director General at the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), noted that “Agriculture is not just key to fighting poverty but is also critical to food security and an economic engine of growth”. He noted that with productive land shrinking efforts are needed to ensure food production is in line with the environment. With the current trend of depletion of resources and climate change, Africa is likely to feel more strongly the consequences. He advised that the entire food and agricultural systems therefore need more improvement, modernization and ecologically sustainable practices. He cautioned that, “Business as usual is not an option and that Organic farming is the way to go”. He reported that only about 2% of land globally is managed organically and this has to change. Organic agriculture is the key to sustainable intensification, strengthening health of soils, ecosystems, water retention […]

Dr. David Amudavi: Agricultural land under organic farming is steadily increasing.

Over the last two decades, the development of Organic Agriculture has gained momentum in Africa. Agricultural land under organic farming is steadily increasing according to data released by FiBL. Dr. David Amudavi, the BvAT Director, said this when he spoke at the Biofach Session on the Global Organic Market Overview attended by over 200 people. The session looked deeper into the market developments and reflected about trends and strategic market positioning following presentation of new statistic figures on the first day of the fair. Presenting on the African perspective, he noted that according to the latest FiBL data, Africa had almost 2.1 million hectares of agricultural land under organic farming in 2017, which is 0.2 percent of the continent’s total agricultural area and 3 percent of the global organic agricultural area. This is an increase of about 255,000 hectares or 14 percent compared to 2016, and it increased by more than 2 million hectares from the 52,000 hectares in 2000. The current organic size area is from 44 countries that […]

The BvAT ED attends Berlin International Green Week

The Biovision Africa Trust executive director, Dr. David Amudavi, was among thousands of participants from different countries and across different sectors that attended the Berlin International Green Week (IGW), supported by BMZ. The event took place from 18th to 27th January 2019 in Berlin, Germany. Founded in Berlin in the Golden 20s (1926), IGW is a one-of-a-kind international exhibition of the food, agriculture and gardening industries. IGW is the origin of the Global Forum for Food and Agriculture (GFFA). This is where over 80 international ministries and food producers meet – their displays reveal the fascinating world of the food and beverage industries. Dr. Amudavi attended this event courtesy of the BMZ support. The event brought together; Over 1,700 exhibitors with over 100,000 products from all over the world. 300 technical conferences. Food industry representatives, wholesalers, retailers, caterers. Agricultural importers. International specialists from all fields of agriculture, forestry, horticulture and commercial fishing. Agricultural policy and administration experts. During his participation in the event, Dr. Amudavi had positive interactions with the […]

BvAT to take lead as the coordinating organization for the BMZ supported Knowledge Hub for Organic Agriculture in Eastern Africa

German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) is set to support a network of regional knowledge hubs for organic farming in Africa through Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). The new organic knowledge centers will be based in Eastern, Western and Southern Africa with an already established Organic Hub in Egypt, North Africa. Biovision Africa Trust based in Kenya is set to take lead in the coordination, establishment and running of the BMB/GIZ supported Knowledge Hub for Organic Agriculture in Eastern Africa with its consortium of regional partners – IFOAM OI, CIAT, ICIPE and Access Agriculture for a period of 5 years. The project will be implemented in 6 countries of Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi. This comes after BvAT with its consortium of partners submitted a convincing and comprehensive proposal for setting up the Eastern Africa regional hub and went through all the approval stages of initial screening, due diligence assessment by independent assessors and further institutional assessment by GIZ and BMZ. BvAT passed the test. […]

SSNC’s General Secretary’s Visit to BvAT

Biovision Africa Trust played host to SSNC’s General Secretary Ms. Karin Lexen at their offices on January 22nd, 2019. The main aim of her visit was to understand BvATs work especially the programmes supported by SSNC and understand other areas that the 2 organizations can establish partnerships in the future. During her visit, she was welcomed by BvAT staff who held intensive discussions to give her an in-depth understanding of BvATs work in Kenya and the rest of Africa. Ms. Karin was taken through the overall work of BvAT and the work BvAT is doing through one of its key main programmes, the Farmer Communications Programme (FCP) by Ms. Pauline Mundia the Outreach Manager of FCP. Ms. Mundia explained that FCP program funded by Biovision Foundation  is implemented through 4 communication channels of Farmer Outreach Centres, The Organic Farmer Magazine, The Organic Farmer Radio and Infonet data base. Ms. Karin was also taken through the work BvAT is doing under the Ecological Organic Agriculture Initiative (EOA-I ) by Ms. Venancia […]

Urban Farming Through Agroecological Technologies

In every food conference today, there is a tract on urban farming; there are participants and speakers referring to themselves as urban farmers. If you google “urban agriculture”, you will find thousands of results. Urban farming is clearly in the mind and eyes of many individuals, community groups, environmentalists and even NGOs. That’s great, but what does it all mean, what is urban farming and why all the interest now? The term “Urban farming” may sound like an oxymoron, but the concept has gone from being unimaginable to a real solution food security. Biovision Africa Trust (BvAT) has been at the core of promoting this emerging solution to food security through its trainings on agroecological practices and that forms the basis for our story of the week. We focus on Mrs. Gaudensia Musanga, a business lady residing with her family on a small plot at the Shibuye market center in Shinyalu, Kakamega County. Living in a predominantly farming community, Musanga felt disadvantaged having to buy food when most people got […]

Das ist für deutsche Sprecher. BvAT war in den Schweizer Medien

The Biovision Foundation marked its 20th anniversary of supporting people in developing regions and providing real help. During these celebrations, Biovision used the 3rd week of November 2018 to reflect on its work in Africa. Biovision Africa Trust (BvAT) work also featured and it was trending in the Swiss media. This is an article that featured in the Swiss media Article about Biovision Projects

Organic Farming Pays

Domain of change (Project): Outreach When did the change happen: Since 2010. Name of storyteller: Francis Maina Role of storyteller: CIW Date of recording:  2nd of November 2018 Interviewer:  Hudson Wereh Given the harmful effects of chemical pesticides on our health and the current obsession with label reading for organic products by consumers, surely farmers must start producing organically to tap this growing opportunity. Right? That’s what Francis Maina thought in 2010. – at the time working with one horticultural company in Naivasha. But he was wrong, whereas he’d shudder at the thought of what the chemicals were doing to his health, farmers continued using agrochemicals oblivious of their effects. Francis decided like the proverbial humming bird and the forest fire, he was going to do something whatever small. He quit his job at the horticulture company in Naivasha and went back to Gilgil to work on his farm using organic production principles. He had a challenge in accessing information of the relevant technologies to employ. He started volunteering with Biovision Africa Trust (BvAT) as […]

Organic Farming Has Saved My Soils

Elizabeth Karanja is a true testimony that organic farming restores our soil fertility. She shared her journey of transformation and the whole story can be access here; Elizabeth Karanja’s Story on how Organic Farming has Saved her Soils