In today’s #Impactstory we would like to introduce you to Manfa Keita. He lives with his family in Djoliba and is a trained farmer.

Currently, Manfa is not yet a customer of Africa GreenTec. But the potential of our sustainable products, especially in the primary sector, can be demonstrated very well by Manfa’s story. The modernization of agriculture is essential for the structural transformation of African economies. In order to achieve this goal, however, sustainable technologies are requisite . But now to Manfa.

Farmer, Landwirtschaft
Manfa Keita is a trained farmer with a lot of practical experience

Manfa – a trained farmer with practical experience and skills

Manfa’s family belongs to the economically well situated families of Djoliba. Thus, he had the opportunity to attend school until the age of 21 and to pursue several study programs. His studies took him to Niger, Burkina Faso and Guinea, among other places, where he specialized in agriculture and learned different types of cultivation and techniques. Traditional farming techniques and how to harvest sustainably were of particular interest to Manfa. After his studies, he returned to Djoliba and joined several farmer organizations. About his decision to do so, he said:

"I am a very practical person. I think you always get more benefits when you join forces. You gain more input and different ideas which you can then put to work for your individual purposes. I help you, you help me - a simple and useful principle."

Manfa Keita
Farmer, Landwirtschaft
Manfa's expertise is appreciated throughout the village

Self-efficiency through collaborative exchange

Manfa is on good terms  with other farmers in Djoliba and the surrounding area. It is common knowledge that he is a trained farmer, and the other farmers appreciate his expertise and advices. In return, they sometimes help him out in the field during harvest time and thus support him in his field work. When we ask Manfa why exactly he decided to become a farmer, his answer is quite clear:

"I already told you that I am a practical person. For me, agriculture is like a bank. I invest a certain amount of labor and diligence in agricultural work and in return I get food for myself and my family, as well as money back through the sale of the surplus. The greatest gift is independence. When you are a farmer, you provide for yourself."

Manfa Keita
Farmer, Landwirtschaft
Meanwhile, Manfa cultivates several hectares of land

In 2000, Manfa began farming his first plot of land. A vegetable field. In addition, he also raises sheep and cows, but he sees that only as a secondary occupation. The animals do relieve him of the burden of transporting the harvest, as he sometimes uses them as beasts of burden, but his one focus is mainly on the vegetable harvest. 

Today Manfa cultivates several hectares of land

Over the years, several hectares of land have been added to Manfa’s initial terrain. Managing the work entirely on his own is becoming increasingly difficult, which is why he has enlisted the help of specialized companies that take care of the irrigation of the plants, for example. The solar pumps from Africa GreenTec would also be a useful alternative or complementary solution here. With the high-quality solar pumps, Manfa could irrigate his fields effectively – and at the same time reduce negative impact  on the environment by using 100% renewable energy. Africa GreenTec will soon introduce these pumps to the African market. Speaking about the future use of Africa GreenTec’s products, Manfa says:

"At the moment, I'm still just about managing to get the work done. My wives also help out with the harvest from time to time. But we also have children who need to be looked after. For the future, I would definitely like to see better technological solutions that can make my work a little easier. If Africa GreenTec can deliver these, so much the better!"

Manfa Keita
Farmer, Landwirtschaft
Sustainable technologies would make more efficient land use possible

Lack of irrigation and cooling facilities as an obstacle to productive agriculture

Manfa additionally cites the lack of a reliable cold chain as one of the biggest obstacles to efficient harvesting or production. A few weeks ago, he was in the village of Sikasso and spoke with local farmers. They were very pleased, as the government has installed a kind of cold store there where the farmers can store their harvest.

Manfa would like to see the same thing for Djoliba. This is because a large part of his harvest is spoiled, if not by lack of irrigation, by the absence of a cooling system. The provision of some Cooltainers from Africa GreenTec is already in discussion with the local authorities of Djoliba. This could drastically reduce crop losses. When asked about his vision for the future, Manfa gives us the following answer:

"I will remain a farmer. I was born a farmer and I will die a farmer, just like my father. But do you remember what I told you about me? - I am a practical person - and that is why I want to offer services in Djoliba that are needed. Like a copy store, for example. So I would like to realize something like that in the future, but I will always be a farmer."

Manfa Keita
Farmer, Landwirtschaft
The Africa GreenTec Team during the visit to Manfa

From 2002 to 2007, Manfa served as an advisor to the mayor and was able to gain direct insight into the various needs of Djoliba’s residents. In addition to providing copiers, printers, etc., he also sees a well-functioning Internet as a priority for the village.

Learn more about Manfa in a follow up blog article soon!

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