Innovators and experts at the Fall Armyworm Tech Co-Creation Event which took place in Uganda have expressed worries about the threat of armyworm to agriculture sector in Africa.
The forum also announced the Fall Armyworm Tech Prize which seeks digital tools and approaches that provide timely, context-specific information enabling smallholder farmers and those who support them to identify, treat, and track incidence of fall armyworm in Africa.
The competition attracted 228 entries, with over 80 per cent entries from Africa. There will be 40 innovators, 2 for each finalist team at the three-day Co-Creation. Event in Kampala Uganda, affording finalists the opportunity to celebrate their status and provide them opportunities to continue to develop their prototypes through co-creation and expert advice.
Finalists will participate in workshops, panels, and activities such as business development planning, prototyping, understanding the farmer context and a marketplace where their prototypes will be on display for early feedback, as this will help them improve and further develop their prototypes.
The finalists’ solution titles are as follows: A Mobile Layaway Solution to Combating Fall Armyworm (USA), “Boa me” (Ghana), Africa Rising (RSA), AfriFARM (USA), AGRI-POLL: A smart survey system (Uganda), AL-based Digital Monitoring System (Israel), Autonomous FAW Identification Using Deep Learning (USA), CdPAS Mobile : Crop disease prediction and advisory services on any mobile phone (Ghana),
Others are CornBot: Farmers Everyday Virtual Assistant for Sustainable Maize Production (Nigeria), Digicult (Taiwan), EzyAgric (Uganda), Fall Armyworm Identification, Verification and Mitigation through Digital Information (Kenya), FarmSmart Pest and Disease (PAD) app (Nigeria), LEA: Pests? Problem solved! (Uganda), Locsmman Pro/OFES (Ghana), Shape Up Against Armyworm (Kenya), UDefeatFAW (USA), WeFAW Alert and Expert Advisory Model (WeFAW) (USA), and Zaois-Tech (Kenya).
“We are thrilled to welcome the finalists to Kampala for the Co-Creation Event. We know that we’ll be working with a group of fantastic innovators on their journey to fight fall armyworm. The Co-Creation Event marks the start of a period of support that will help finalists work on their initial ideas and make them even greater.” Liz Vossen, NESTA
– $150,000 for the most viable solution, two awards of $75,000 to the “most promising” solutions, and two awards of $50,000 to an “early stage” solution that shows the most potential.