The long awaited 3rd All Africa Postharvest Congress and Exhibition (3rd AAPHCE), is here! Mark your calendars and plan to attend this Pan-African convening that is scheduled for 13th to 16th to September 2021 and hosted by the African Union Commission (AUC). The event is organized by diverse partners, including development partners, private sector actors, academic/research institutions, and civil society. Due to travel restrictions occasioned by the COVID-19 Pandemic, the 3rd AAPHCE will be a fully virtual congress.
The theme for the 3rd AAPHCE is Postharvest Loss Reduction for Sustainable Food Systems. This theme is aligned with the 2021 call to action towards sustainable food systems. It is evident that food loss and waste reduction is critical in ending hunger in sustainable food systems. When 1.3 billion metric tons of food is lost/wasted annually in a world where 820 million people continue to go hungry every day, it is time to change how we produce and consume our food. The 3rd AAPHCE comes on the backdrop of the global Pandemic, COVID-19 which has exposed the vulnerability and inefficiency of local and global food systems. Significant volumes of food have been lost/wasted as food distribution systems were disrupted, especially in low-income countries with inadequate postharvest infrastructure. Therefore, better postharvest management to reduce food loss and waste is a key strategy towards achieving food and nutrition security in sustainable food systems. There are concerted efforts and targets at the global and regional levels to reduce food loss and waste. In the recently launched United Nation’s International Day of Awareness on Food Loss and Waste (IDFLW), there is a call to action by all actors including governments and decision makers, private sector, development agencies, civil society, research & academia and consumers. All these actors must work together in complementarity to achieve the set targets at the global and regional level of halving food loss and waste by 2030 (United Nation’s SDG 12.3) and 2025 (Malabo Declaration, 2014).
Since its inception in 2017, the AAPHCE has evolved into an important Pan-African convening to create awareness about food loss and waste and showcase sustainable solutions in the African context. The AAPHCE also provides a platform to network and establish partnerships for research, outreach and investment initiatives towards food loss and waste reduction.
We look forward to hosting you at the 3rd AAPHCE, spread the word!