AGRA has launched a call for applications for the 2023 Women Agripreneurs of the Year Awards (WAYA), which recognizes African women agri-entrepreneurs who have demonstrated remarkable innovation and business excellence across agricultural value chains.
The winning agrientrepreneurs, who will be unveiled during the 2023 AGRF Summit, will receive a total of $85,000 in grant money, according to a statement from the organizers.
According to Vanessa Adams, AGRA Vice President and Party Head for Strategic Partnerships, to be eligible for WAYA, businesses must operate in the agriculture or agribusiness value chain, must be a legal entity registered in a country that is a member state Is. African Union, and at least 51 per cent is owned and managed by one or more women who are citizens of one of the 55 African countries, it said, adding that entries are to be submitted online by May 31.
Last year, a Nigerian, Oluyemsey Iranloi, managing director of Saltry International, took home the overall grand prize for his cassava processing initiative. Fatou Manneh, founder of Jelmah Herbela from The Gambia, won in the Young Female Agripreneur category; Rwanda’s Mahwi Tech CEO Uwintwari Liliane wins Female Egg Tech Innovator; and Celia Chabi, CEO of Kiel Bien-ATRE from Benin, won in the Outstanding Value-Added Enterprise category.
He said applications are being received in three categories: Young Women Agripreneurs (for those under the age of 35 and who have demonstrated innovation and leadership in business); Outstanding Value-Added Enterprises (for women-owned agricultural businesses that are increasing the economic value and/or consumer appeal of agricultural products); and Women Ag-Tech Innovators (who support technological advancements in agribusiness); and an overall grand prize winner will be determined by the candidate who best demonstrates potential for scale.
Adams said: “The participation and recognition of women in this agricultural sector has historically been overlooked. That’s why we believe it is necessary to shine a spotlight on women who are making significant contributions to the agriculture industry through their innovation, leadership and entrepreneurship.
“By recognizing the undeniable contribution of women to African food systems, we hope to inspire and encourage more women to pursue careers in agriculture.”