A strong food and agriculture system is fundamental to economic growth, poverty reduction, environmental sustainability, and human health. The Agriculture and Food Series is intended to prompt public discussion and inform policies that will deliver higher incomes, reduce hunger, improve sustainability, and generate better health and nutrition from the food we grow and eat. It expands on the former Agriculture and Rural Development series by considering issues from farm to fork, in both rural and urban settings. Titles in this series undergo internal and external review under the management of the World Bank’s Agriculture and Food Global Practice.
This book presents a heavily disruptive, inclusive, and resilient solution to Africa’s wide-ranging food security challenges. Specifically, it assesses the benefits and costs of using the frontier agriculture technologies to create a circular food economy in Africa, particularly in Fragility, Conflict, and Violence (FCV)-affected countries. This book focuses on two types of frontier agriculture technologies: insect farming and hydroponic crop farming. Both technologies quickly produce nutritious human food and animal feed and could provide tremendous health, social, economic, climatic, environmental, and food security benefits in Africa. Insect and hydroponic farming can create a circular food economy by reusing society’s organic waste, including agricultural and certain industrial waste, to produce foods for humans, fish, and livestock without the need for vast amounts of arable land or water resources. This book finds that frontier agriculture is a viable complement to conventional agriculture in Africa and could meet many of the continent’s social, economic, environmental, and food security challenges. The book also shows that frontier agriculture can be economically competitive with conventional agriculture in the resource constrained environments of African FCV countries, while generating a fraction of the climate and environmental damage. These frontier agriculture technologies show great potential for growth and scalability as the market is rapidly increasing for novel protein sources from farmed insects and for nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables from hydroponic crops.
(Washington, DC: World Bank, 2021-03-16)
Schroeder, Kateryna; Lampietti, Julian; Elabed, Ghada
The digital agriculture revolution holds a promise to build an agriculture and food system that
is efficient, environmentally sustainable, and equitable, one that can help deliver the Sustainable
Development Goals. Unlike past technological revolutions in agriculture, which began on farms,
the current revolution is being sparked at multiple points along the agrifood value chain. The
change is driven by the ability to collect, use, and analyze massive amounts of machine-readable
data about practically every aspect of the value chain, and by the emergence of digital platforms
disrupting existing business models. All this allows for drastically reduced transaction costs and
pervasive information asymmetries that plague the agrifood system. The success of the digital
transformation, however, is not guaranteed as the risks it brings are numerous, including those
related to data governance and inadequate competition within and between digital platforms.
What’s Cooking: Digital Transformation of the Agrifood System investigates how digital technologies
can accelerate the transformation of the agrifood system by increasing efficiency on the farm;
improving farmers’ access to output, input, and financial markets; strengthening quality control
and traceability; and improving the design and delivery of agriculture policies. It also identifies
a key role for the public sector in maximizing the benefits of this process while minimizing
its risks, through enabling an innovation ecosystem featuring open datasets, digital platforms,
digital entrepreneurship, digital payment systems, and digital skills and encouraging equitable