In addition to promoting innovation and productivity, infrastructure development and supporting professional associations and networkers (“farmers know best what they need”), it was important to expand trade. Africa had a mere two-per-cent share of world trade, and only 14 per cent of goods produced in the continent were part of inner-African trade. “Profit must be generated locally,” said Flachsbarth.

What is the unique African way?

“The way we do business has to reflect the uniqueness of the continent,” Agnes Kalibata, AGRA President, maintained. Whereas, for example, two crops were enough for the success of the Green Revolution in India, the African green revolution had to consider the extremely different global environment on the continent. This was why here, the organisation was doing research on 18 commodities, including millet, cowpeas and beans. It was important for the development of the sector to increase the value of the commodities and the return on investment in labour, Kalibata claimed.