Introducing the Kigali Horticulture Declaration
By Elijah Mwashayenyi, Head of East-West Seed Knowledge Transfer in Africa.
Last week, SNV, a not-for-profit international development organization based in the Netherlands, convened a learning workshop in Kigali, Rwanda, to highlight the importance of the food systems approach in horticulture projects. This approach considers the food system in its totality, taking into account all components, interactions, and related effects, including elements like stakeholders, nutrition, the environment, social-economic factors, and gender.
The 12–14 October learning workshop was part of the HortInvest Project, of which SNV is the lead implementing partner.
Representing East-West Seed Knowledge Transfer Foundation at the workshop were Stuart Morris, EWS-KT Director, and Elijah Mwashayenyi, Head of East-West Seed Knowledge Transfer in Africa. Alongside 44 workshop participants from the region, Stuart and Elijah explained EWS-KT’s work and its overlap with other regional initiatives through an interactive poster presentation.
Also participating in the workshop was our HortiNigeria project partner International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC), represented by Salasi Mohammed Idris and Feyikami Adurogbangbaand—the latter of whom presented the HortiNigeria project to all workshop participants. The HortiNigeria project, which began in 2021, aims to facilitate the development of a sustainable and gender- and youth-inclusive horticulture sector that contributes to food and nutritional security in Nigeria. During group work, Elijah also talked about HortiNigeria to fellow participants.
Highlights of the workshop included:
- Discussions on the food systems approach.
- A critical analysis of projects from different countries, using the food systems lens.
- A field visit that took the group to Pride Farms, an organic farm, and Garden Fresh, a private packhouse that exports vegetables. Based in Kigali, both organizations also work with smallholder farmers as outgrowers complementing their own production.
At the end of the workshop, participants agreed on a declaration highlighting 12 important considerations for horticulture projects. The Kigali Horticulture Declaration will not only be important in future project design but can also be used to align current projects with at least some of the food systems approach components.
We are proud to take part in convenings like this that enhance the horticulture sector.