Our 2015 Photo Story

Mic...check Script..check Scene...check Let's do this story!

Let’s do this story!

We’ve come to the end of another year! This time around we had some ups and downs. And we think it best to give you the highlights of our blog, our web series and our colleagues, as we wish you and yours all the best for the season and happy and prosperous New year!

Do ensure this photo story!

We started the year with our usual tech topics such as robotic farming, renewable energies and bringing old techniques back into modern production. It truly is astonishing what exists out there in the world both simple and complex technologies and sciences which make agriculture interesting to us youth. But behind all of this are people…young people!

Tech4agri at TFF

Growing out TFF community - Photo courtesy Thought for Food

Growing out TFF community – Photo courtesy Thought for Food

In came the Thought for Food Challenge and summit where we met some of the greatest and most enthusiastic young minds in food and agriculture today. The event was truly motivating having been introduced and are still in contact with finalist teams and other participants.

Tech4agri: the podcast that failed...but it will return!

Tech4agri: the podcast that failed…but it will return!

Then came a bright shining light and complete failure….well it depends on how you look at it. Tech4agri launched its very own podcast. We got some great feedback from you, our followers but reality hit, in that we just could not keep it up. When delivering our stories we want great quality and interesting content. While the podcast was great we found it difficult to find the type of content we needed while simultaneously handling our other projects. It lasted three episodes but it’s not dead it will return!

Tech4agri Team

Tech4agri Team

As an entrepreneur, failure is ever present. So Tech4agri regrouped and focused on what was needed to get its long planned web series off the ground! We finally got our team together! Meet our team again!

Agri journalists of Tech4agri

Agri journalists of Tech4agri

We started our work in  agri journalism and got great feedback with our mini documentary Agripeople! #Motivation

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 25: The 2015 Online News Association Conference at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel on September 25, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Daniel Petty/for ONA)

LOS ANGELES, CA – SEPTEMBER 25: The 2015 Online News Association Conference at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel on September 25, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Daniel Petty/for ONA)


Again we were #winners having earned a fellowship to the Online News Association conference for 2015 held in Los Angeles. We were humbled to be selected as one of the best early career young digital journalists for the event. #mindblown at all the tech we learned of that can be used for journalism!

Continue reading

Tech4agri The web series Ep 3 – Stress & Livestock

Not only does climate change affect people and crop production but it also has a big impact on livestock. This episode looks at strategies to safely manage livestock given our changing climate.

We learned that observing temperatures, proper housing, location of food sources, monitoring of potential risk for diseases and resilience after weather related shocks all contribute toward ensuring minimum stress to livestock of all types. This then results in better product (dairy and meat) in the long run.

Thanks for your support thus far and we will keep these episodes coming!

In order to improve our quality and ensure consistency of episodes we need support! If you are aware of any organisations that will sponsor our endeavour, please do let us know.

A Rural Story: Value Chain approach for developing sustainable profitable market linkages

Originally posted on the blog for the Caribbean-Pacific Agri-Food Forum 2015

The Journey to Rafi's rural farm in Trinidad and Tobago

The Journey to Rafi’s rural farm in Trinidad and Tobago

A two and a half hour drive, over pockets of traffic, past aggressive transport truck drivers, across the rural landscape, and then barefoot through a ravine – all to meet “Rafi”, a Chadon Beni (Shadow Benny) producer of Rio Claro located in South Trinidad. This is a common herb used for seasoning in food preparation across the Caribbean.

The journey was long but so be it, as this is what it takes to meet with rural farmers across the country and many other parts of the region. The visit was meant to assess any possible pests and diseases which may be affecting Rafi’s Chadon Beni crop. Earlier he described a yellowing and stunting effect occurring with the crop. After a few minutes of conversation the situation became clear.

The bowl as it stands

Rafi explained that he farmed Chadon Beni for 15 years, acknowledging it as a crop that holds great profit, specifically due to the fact that a large percentage of Trinidad and Tobago’s local cuisine utilises this herb. Suffice to say the demand for the crop is heavy as the general local preference is that “the food must taste good” in which Chadon Beni is key. Additionally, the crop is highly demanded for export.

Also to note that Rafi has shifted from a farmer, as he also produced dasheen, dasheen bush, plantains and other crops, onto a middleman. This means he has significantly reduced his production levels in order to act as an in-between for other producers and their buyers at the country’s largest wholesale market. Living in the south of the country, he traverses the long journey every day as this activity is also profitable.

Continue reading

Forward Onward Ahead – Tech4agri shines again

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 25: The 2015 Online News Association Conference at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel on September 25, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Daniel Petty/for ONA)

LOS ANGELES, CA – SEPTEMBER 25: The 2015 Online News Association Conference at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel on September 25, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Daniel Petty/for ONA)

We are edging closer and closer to our launch for tech4agri: the Web series!

We’re diligently working on getting this series up online by Nov 2nd. Hope you are following our progress via instagram, twitter and facebook. Due to our focus on the series, our blog has suffered. Fortunately this is a positive rather than a negative as there is no straight line to success.

You, our readers may be unaware but Tech4agri faces a large number of challenges in terms of limited resources, time management and plain old failed business ventures. Regardless, through perseverance we have made successes and we are happy to tell you about two of them:

Winner yet again!

We are happy to have experience the amazing event that was the Online News Association conference!

Years ago, one of the driving forces behind this US based organization, Ms. MJ Bear, foresaw the important role the digital media would play in the future of journalism and spearheaded a fellowship for early career digital journalists. Unfortunately MJ passed away, however her colleagues saw it fit to bring the fellowship into a reality.

This fellowship allows young journalists with exceptional projects and work experience to be sponsored to attend the conference. Tech4agri with our web series and past resume of work was fortunate to among the chosen few. Learn more of our project and that of the other fellows.

Continue reading

Does data belong in the Caribbean?

#datarevolution in the caribbean

Photo Courtesy NASA: Eye on the Caribbean at night

“ Is there a #datarevolution happening in the Caribbean?”

This week we have a special post of interest, sort of removed from our usual topics. Of late there is a growing trend for use of data in agriculture particularly for developing countries. However as the Caribbean region is very different from other parts of the world how does this bode for the agri field and on the same note for other sectors in which development is needed?

The Caribbean Open Institute: a regional initiative conceptualized by a community of Caribbean stakeholders and sponsored by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) that seeks to facilitate the emergence of a Caribbean knowledge economy where the use of open data is meant to be the helm for transforming society and improving the quality of life for Caribbean societies.”

Open Data in the Caribbean has the potential to provide a powerful catalyst for enabling greater accountability and transparency; improving public sector efficiency and service delivery; and stimulating economic development through the active, participatory innovation between regional governments and caribbean civil society.

Continue reading