Agriculture (including forestry and fisheries) is the mainstay of the Sierra Leonean economy employing over 60 percent of the labor force mostly at the subsistence level. The agricultural sector is constrained by several factors including lack of improved inputs, labor shortages, and post-harvest losses. Land degradation and deforestation have resulted in declining soil fertility, which in turn has undermined sustainable agricultural development in the country.
Despite the above challenges, we are seeing an increasing number of young people moving into Agriculture. At Innovations Axis( our incubation hub), we can count 6 of our start ups as Agribusiness, whose founders are all under 30 years old.
It is very encouraging to see young people moving into this sectors. Often these young men and women are university graduates. They bring knowledge into farming and are much more likely to use digital technology. They also have disruptive business models.
More crucial, they have the potential to employ other young persons, especially in the rural areas.
However, these young agripreneurs are faced with the lack of available finance for their business ideas from traditional banks.
As innovative entrepreneurs, they are turning to digital technology to access investment from the general public.
Innovation SL, as an Entrepreneurship Support Organisation, is launching this Crowdfunding platform-MoniforFarm to meet the seed capital needs Agripreneurs in Sierra Leone.