Food chain

Attractive entrepreneurship options in the food chain – NIMAR in cooperation with ESCA, Casablanca

The challenge of feeding the population of the growing metropoles in African countries requires and upgrading of the agricultural and horticultural practices throughout the complete food chain. Traditional knowledge and traditional practices have to be upgraded by scientific and technological improvements, and by demand based entrepreneurship.

Different fields of knowledge and professionalism need to be combined: knowledge of market opportunities for continuous and high quality production, insight in cooperation options (and competition) in the value chain, a keen eye on sectoral development and opportunities of involvement from universities, government agencies and companies, management competences for running a larger enterprise in food production or elsewhere in the food chain, these are (a mix of quite different!) competences required, and to be combined with “green hearts” and “green fingers” for the subtle strategies that make the difference. This entails research on the present ecosystem, the capacities and competences, entrepreneurial skills and knowledge required. The students will take their point of departure within the student population of the different universities in Rabat and Casablanca and the ecosystem of horticulture in its surroundings. Issues to be studied by the students:

  1. What are the current practices in agriculture and horticulture?
  2. What is the level of competences, and skills of people involved in different positions?
  3. What improvements need to be/can be made to reach a level of continuous high quality production of food, taking into account the capacities and skills, the different roles in the ecosystem, technologies that are available and affordable?
  4. What new developments are taking place in agriculture and horticulture value chain in terms of technology, chain management, marketing of the produce (retailers, supermarkets)?
  5. What are the current practices in the preparation of students for future roles in the food ecosystem?
  6. To what extent do these practices meet the requirements of future entrepreneurial roles in the ecosystem?
  7. What are the opinions of the present student generation on the future of food?
  8. What can be done to turn food and entrepreneurship into attractive options for a future student generation?
    The deliverable of this assignment is a number 3 of short movies (10 minutes each at max) that explore how present practices on questions 1-8 can be turned into promising opportunities both for the ecosystem and for job opportunities for entrepreneurial students.

This assignment is open for many study backgrounds, but especially entrepreneurship, management, humanities, social sciences.