The winners of the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation journalism award. From left: Competition chief judge Professor Maria Protz, third-place winner Line Renée Anaba from Cameroon, first-place winner Faumuina Tafuna'i from Samoa, and second place was Inoussa Maiga from Burkina Faso.
Women in Business media officer Faumuina Tafuna’i has won an international journalism award for her coverage of an agricultural conference in Ethiopia.
After winning a regional media competition run by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Faumuina went on to take first place honours over other regional winners from Africa and the Caribbean.
Judge Maria Protz said Faumuina’s story on emerging mobile services for smallholder farmers was impressive and more like four stories combined into one. The first place prize was Euro1000, as well as another Euro1000 for winning the regional award.
Thanking CTA for the opportunity and recognition of her work, Faumuina said receiving the award was both humbling and gratifying.
“Winning the award was an important goal for me because I knew it would raise the profile of Women in Business, Samoa and the Pacific on the international farming stage.
“Even in the writing of my story, I made many contacts that I know will be able to assist Samoa in the future. I am enormously thankful for all the people who gave me their time and thoughts.”
Second place went to Inoussa Maiga from Burkina Faso and third place went to Line Renée Anaba from Cameroon.
The award was presented at the closing ceremony of Making the Connections – a conference that brought together 500 private sector representatives, government officials, farming organisations, civil societies, academics and donors from Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) nations.
The conference theme was how best to include smallholder farmers in value chains in a way that transformed them into entrepreneurs.
Women in Business executive director Adimaimalaga Tafuna’i said the international award represented another quality milestone for the organisation, which would only bring positive benefits for farmers in the country.
“The spin-offs from this international award will be many for our Samoan farmers because it shows the rest of the world that we are serious and committed to agriculture and commerce.”
Women in Business production manager Stephen Hazelman also attended the conference as a presenter at the Value chains and capacity building: more homework is still needed session.
There it was recognized that agricultural value chains require specific production, post-harvest and supply chain management skills as well as multidisciplinary knowledge. These skills and knowledge are rarely included in the capacity-building programme for farmers, traders and small-and-medium agro-processors. Nor do they feature at higher education institutes and as a result ACP value chains are not able to compete at a global level.
As a result, the session recommended competitive collaboration among different capacity building stakeholders; centre training schemes on value addition across the entire value chain; build capacities in community engagement and unleash existing skills already available among chain stakeholders; develop agribusiness incubators within universities; and encourage the mobility of teachers and students between universities with agribusiness courses.
Hazelman also represented the Pacific countries to make final remarks at the closing session.
Also present at the conference was Nonu Samoa CEO Garry Vui.
Other Pacific regional representatives included: Agribusiness specialist Tim Martyn and Information and communications assistant Vinesh Prasad from Secretariat of the Pacific Community, Kokosiga project managers Livai Tora and Kyle Stice, Dr Charles Eaton from Contract Farming Systems and Debbie David from South Sea Orchids all from Fiji; and Elizabeth Isu Rava from the Oil Palm Industry Corporation in Papua New Guinea.
Posted: Fri 16 Nov 2012