We are then surprised by the results; poisoning of the soil and the environment, disturbing biological balance, pest outbreaks, reduced productivity, faster release of greenhouse gases, health risks due to pesticides and fertilizers in the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the food we eat.
Oh yes, we began using chemicals to prevent poverty and hunger, yet those exist in massive numbers, which is why they are SDGs #1 and #2.
* Mechanical equipment.
Today’s “professional agriculture” is about “efficiency.” We plow our (larger) fields more efficiently than in the 1930s Dust Bowl.
The results surprise us though they shouldn’t; we damage the soil texture, kill microorganisms in the soil, cause soil erosion, and reduce local water absorption in the ground, which causes soil erosion, floods, and reduced soil fertility.
We end up with unsustainable agriculture, which increases global warming (instead of balancing it). It offers no viable solution to worldwide poverty and hunger among farmers in developing economies.
We invent new chemicals, technologies, and methods and then market those as fast and as much as we can, by professional business leaders, like the CEOs of the agrochemical companies, who think first and foremost about the next quarter’s report and their own bank account rather than the common good and long-term impact.
As we speak, global warming keeps rising, and poverty and hunger remain the SDGs #1 and #2.
Yet, our incentive system pushes CEOs of oil and chemical companies to increase production of the same things that put at risk our ecosystem and the future of our species.
We must end this suicidal behavior by using business incentives that would attract the Davos people to invest in farming in emerging economies based on an updated set of priorities, one that thinks of the common good.
For example, we often subsidize African agricultural activity by incentivizing companies to sell small-hold farmers' technologies and services.
That is ineffective if we don’t connect the subsidies to the outcome, i.e., farmers’ increased income or profit.
At the same time, it can be highly successful when subsidies are directly linked to the economic impact felt by farmers and at the national level.
"We must live together as brothers or perish together as fools." Martin Luther King Jr.
HOW AND WHAT TO DO?
Our ability and need for innovation should not (and can’t) be suppressed.
Instead, we should design our incentives for political, social, and business leaders so that the success of the "Me" results from the "Our" success based on sustainable principles.
In agriculture, I suggest we start with the following three principles:
* Non-harm: using materials, methods, and products that do not harm - us, non-target organisms, and the environment.
* Constant improvement: measure and improve agreed international indicators, such as biodiversity, soil health, chemical use, and greenhouse gas emissions.
* Availability and accessibility: 97% of farmers are non-professional smallholders. Future agro-tech solutions must support farmers’ transition from poverty to prosperity based on sustainable business-oriented solutions.
"We must accept finite disappointment but never lose infinite hope." Martin Luther King Jr.
We have repeatedly failed to help billions of people in emerging economies escape poverty. It doesn't mean this is hopeless, but the contrary.
We are an innovative species; when we focus on achieving a goal, even getting to the moon, we eventually reach it.
Our problem was never the lack of technologies but more in our state of mind, what we set as goals and how we intend to achieve those, i.e., the human factor.
Technology is only "technology"; it can positively or negatively impact us depending on how we use it.
For example, in the agro sector, there are endless advanced technologies. Still, due to the lack of proper business models, most farmers, i.e., small-hold farmers, have no access to those technologies, for they are unaffordable.
Furthermore, because of using the wrong set of global business incentives, many technologies, practices, and chemicals today are harmful to us, non-target organisms, and the environment.
Technology was and will be critical in helping us solve global challenges. It can play a more positive role if we use it properly in the framework of novel business models and principles.
While tens of thousands of companies and hundreds of conferences deal with the technological challenges and opportunities ahead, there are very few developing the foundation for using novel technologies, which are the business models and guiding principles of use.
"Those who are not looking for happiness are the most likely to find it. Because those who are searching forget that the surest way to be happy is to seek happiness for others." Martin Luther King Jr.
This is where the International Conference On Business Models In Agriculture (IBMA) enters into the picture to illuminate and change the set of mind as to the root causes of farmers’ poverty and hunger.
Thanks to the IBMA conference, people are aware of the critical missing element: dedicated business models and work principles, e.g., regenerative agriculture, for the agro sector, mainly for use by small hold farmers.
The IBMA conference brings us this long-needed change of state of mind. It suggests that regardless of how superior the technology is and how much funds you have, you will fail if you use unsuitable business models, e.g., a good example is the AGRA program which failed.
The IBMA conference is The Place to meet and discuss business models that have failed and ones that look promising, have face-to-face meetings with experts and initiate business relationships.
The underline of the IBMA conference is that we don’t need more of the same, and the Me, Me, Me attitude doesn’t work for ME or US.
It brings life to a global agenda that places "the common good" and the environment alongside the "personal benefit" of business people, politicians, and other managers and leaders.
A working, field-proven example of such a working novel business model is that of Dream Valley. It is based on the Israeli agricultural model with over 70 years of proven success.
Using available technology (the Freedome, by Biofeed) with a novel business model, the Dream Valley program impacted Senegal's mango industry like never before.
During the program period, Senegalese mango growers doubled their income, and Senegal doubled its mango export value to the EU (from € 12M to € 24M).
This is an example of how understanding human nature helps us design a proper business model, which swiftly impacts farmers’ livelihoods and national economics.
Now Dream Valley is going global. This is your chance to join forces with our partners and us and invest in a better future for smallholders while providing investors with a high ROI.
Text me at +972-54-2523425 WhatsApp/ firstname.lastname@example.org