The Dutch horticulture sector is well represented in various parts of Africa, where a range of activities takes place from horticultural production to the provision of key inputs such as seeds. Many companies see the need to (further) strengthen human capacities in the sector, for staff, future staff as well as for the other entrepreneurs they work with. “Getting the basics right” is what is often referred to as one of the cornerstones of horticulture sector development in LMICs.
Endeavours in this field of capacity strengthening are amongst others supported by Nuffic and by the Borderless Network (GroenPact), a collaborative initiative linked to the Dutch green education sector.
Still, the question remained whether more needs to be done. Hence, RijkZwaan and HAS took the initiative to invite a group of key Dutch horticulture companies to indicate their interests and needs, in order to jointly develop an additional initiative to boost the strengthening of capacities of people working in the horticultural sector in Africa. They explored forming a coalition that aims to collaborate as horticulture sector companies, together with a higher education institute, HAS, in a joint learning and training strategy for horticulture sector entrepreneurs and workers. The coalition intends to take the activities of Dutch horticulture and education actors in this field to a higher level, generating a more sustainable impact of capacity strengthening investments and projects, making sure there is more alignment, and enabling the resources and time invested in it to benefit lasting impact.
NFP support to the coalition
NFP already has supported the Horticulture Human Cap coalition in numerous ways. NFP identified and approached potential coalition partners, explored opportunities for joint action and explored exisiting practices.