Proudly Agripreneurs! Learning from 24 young African business leaders
This booklet (PDF) by CTA and Agribusiness TV introduces 24 young entrepreneurs and explains how they are addressing the key youth agripreneurship challenges they are facing. The stories published in this book show that it has helped to promote young entrepreneurs and enable them to reach new clients and establish themselves in markets that were still unexplored, while at the same time reaching other young Africans. Key challenges of young agripreneurs are: 1) Negative image of agriculture: farming has a very poor image and education systems do not encourge young people to take risks. 2) A lack of understanding: family and friends do not understand the potential of agriculture and convince youth to give up on farming. 3) Gender barriers: women agripreneurs face an additional problem in crossing very significant cultural barriers. 4) Lack of profitability: profitability can be affected by various factors, including the need for investment to expand or scale, poor management, targeted category of consumers and more. 5) Financing for scaling up: the agripreneurs found that it is not so much the initial capital that is important, but the investment needed once the company has proved its technical ability,market demand is well established and the time has come to scale up. 6) Shortage of well-trained motivated human resources: Finding available, skilled and motivated human resources is a major challenge. 7) Technical and technological challanges: there is a lack of technical expertise in the sector. 8) Poor uptake of products and market access problems: convincing consumers to ‘eat local’ is challenging. Imported goods are cheaper, better presented, and often perceived to be better quality. 9) Climate change: For a sector that relies so heavily on the weather, the impacts of climate change are a real risk for agripreneurs. 10) Poor public policies on entrepreneurship and agriculture: business policy environments, notably administrative and fiscal frameworks, present a number of challenges for entrepreneurs.