Providing highly enriched Kocho powder as an alternative food source to maintain food security.
Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.
I live in this area and I always see that people are strugling to survive with low income to get enough food. And I decided to work on an alternative way of food source with affordable price but equal or higher quality product and that's why I choosed ENSET( a plant which KOCHO powder is produced from) as the saver of this city.
Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.
Most of the people who live in Addis Ababa eat Enjera, which is the well-known food in Ethiopia and salary is the most common income of the people. Living in the capital city of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa is very expensive and getting enough food is hard. Many people in the city are homeless and eat at most once a day. The people came from all over the country and ethnic diversity is common.
Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.
The African food system is full of challenges especially in Ethiopia our food culture, agricultural practices and socio-economics of our food system are full of waste and backward practices. To see it briefly the challenges in our food system let's take look at our farming practice, in Ethiopia, the crops we cultivate the most are teff, wheat, barley, corn, etc. are not environmental resilience, for example at the harvesting season if a heavy rainfall comes and the crops easily be destroyed and that year will be the year of hunger because we don't have a backup food source. And also, the successive use of those crops decreases the soil quality and every year farmers are forced to use artificial fertilizers and this leads to permanent damage to soil in that area. Another challenge our food system facing today and will continue in the future is the lack of alternative food sources to ensure food security problems. We have the same type of food source for years the price of crops is growing higher and higher every day and it is making almost impossible to survive. The lack of coordination between different governmental, NGO's and private food and agricultural sectors in our food system affected unorganized and undeveloped food system in our community, in addition to this the wide gap between producers, distributors, and consumers highly affected the economy of the stakeholders and decreased efficiency waste management policy. Lack of enough technology in our food system is affecting the production-to-consumption process of our food system and our diets, feeding style, type and test of the food, and recipes are accustomed to one type of culture that we inherited from our ancestors. This makes impossible to adopt a different food culture. In general, it is very restricted and it has to be updated for future use and those challenges will continue if the necessary measures are taken as soon as possible.
Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.
My vision will address almost all the challenges of our food system. Especially when we come to the lack of alternative food sources, our company, Entokocho, will provide the magical and especial food source for the community which is highly enriched Kocho powder. It can save a lot of lives. The source of the powder is Enset plant, it is called a tree against hunger (https://www.kew.org/science/our-science/people/james-s-borrell), a saver of Ethiopia (Addis Fortune JULY 14, 2013 [ VOL 14, NO 690]) but because of the development agendas of Western aid agencies still focus on cereal grains, particularly maize, and lack of enough technology to harvest Enset and to change it into more suitable form of food, Enset continues to be ignored. But now thanks to our company we have enough technology which is invented by our members, we can harness the true power of the plant and use it for the greater use of our society. The powder we produce is very versatile and can be used to make different kinds of food like Injera, bread, biscuits, pizza, and soup with no restrictions to one culture. The plant itself has very especial behavior, its mysterious power helped the plant to be resilient to environmental changes. The main attributes of this plant are:- 1. No need to use artificial fertilizers, Cattle manure is used as the main organic fertilizer. 2. It protects the soil from erosive rainfall and significantly increased the amount of nitrogen in the soil, as well as somewhat increasing potassium and phosphorus (IFPRI). 3. It beautifies the Ethiopian landscape by its thick, dark green foliage. 4. Its fiber as a byproduct of decorticating the leaf sheaths. Enset fiber has excellent structure, and its strength is equivalent to the fiber of abaca, a world-class fiber crop. 5. Enset leaves are an important cattle feed and fresh Enset leaves are used as bread and food wrappers and serving plates. 6. The dried petioles and midribs are used as fuel, and to make mats and tying materials for house construction. 7. It can help prevent malnutrition among pregnant women and children, even before birth (WFP). I truly believe that if we introduce Enset to our food system it can heal it and it should and will be the future crop and its power will be one of the greatest sources of next-generation food. My vision will encourage the farmers to cultivate more Enset increase their income by selling it and will create awareness to different organizations to engage in activities which will help us to build sustainable and regenerative food system in the future.
High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.
The people will have an alternative food source that is affordable and everyone on the consumer side have also the necessary knowledge about the crops they eat and the effects of the food they eat not only on their health but also on the environment they live in and also food security is secured. And the population of the city starts to carry about the sustainability of the food system and force the policymakers to take the necessary steps to harness the potential of technology to get high quality and quantity food system to maintain the balance of the planet.
Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?
Imagine having a crop that will save the planet. Imagine having a beautiful landscape, healthier air, enriched food and a sustainable and regenerative food system in 2050. It is possible that we can have a crop that stays for a longer period of time but can be harvested anytime at any season, environment resilient, highly enriched, doesn't need artificial fertilizers, can provide soil protection and its byproducts have multi-purpose in socio-economic and cultural values of the community. Hunger is common in Ethiopia and 1 in 9 people has a food security problem. And this is mainly because of the drought happens at any time. The agricultural system is based on crops like teff, wheat, barley, and some seasonal vegetables. Those crops and vegetables are not environments resilient, due to this reason sometimes it is impossible to get food through the whole country. Once we introduce Enset to the current food system a regenerative and nourishing food future will be near. By producing magical powder from this plant (Enset) we can ensure a food security problem at least in Ethiopia. Because we are sandwiching this highly enriched powder to the existing food culture to maintain and update the system. The future of Addis Ababa and Ethiopia food culture will be unrestricted and will have the power to adopt a different food culture. The new food source will save a lot of lives and will be an alternative way to maintain the future food system. Our vision is to create an integrated system between governmental organizations, private and NGO's sectors, consumers, producers, and distributors. We are working with different organizations (like bluemoon Ethiopia and Hunger project Ethiopia) to accomplish. Our interest is to create the safest and environment-friendly food system. We believe we can create the future we intended by taking necessary steps at a time and introducing Enset is the milestone to heal the broken and backward current food system of Addis Ababa and Ethiopia.