FAO-IMA-ITC Project: "Improving food packaging for Small and Medium Agro-Enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa"
IMA supported the implementation of the FAO project “Improving food packaging for Small and Medium Agro-Enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa”.
The project’s local trainings contributed to build the capacity of Small and Medium Agro-Enterprises (SMAEs) in different food-related sectors, as well as to collaborate with packaging advisers who supported such enterprises in their development.
IMA finds that creating a Global Partnership for Sustainable Development, as enshrined in the Agenda 2030, means joining forces and giving priority to the most urgent initiatives. It is with this winning philosophy that the Group supported the implementation of the FAO’s Project “Improving food packaging for Small and Medium Agro-Enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa”, taking the example from a project based on a vast partnership, the SAVEFOOD initiative, launched in Düsseldorf at Interpack in 2011.
The Steering Committee of the Project supported by IMA and ITC (International Trade Center) was held in Rome at the FAO Head Quarters, on March 1st 2018.
During the committee, FAO and ITC officers have showed all the activities and outcomes: in particular, the results of ToT (Training of Trainers) on food packaging held in Tanzania, Cameroun, Ivory Coast, Mali, Senegal (27-31 November 2017), and the assessment studies held in Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Zambia (3-7 December 2017) were analyzed. These trainings have contributed to build the capacity of Small and Medium Agro-Enterprises (SMAEs) in different food-related sectors, to build the network of packaging advisers who can assist SMAEs in packaging and ensure a sustainable business model.
All the trainings were organized at local level through presentations, discussions, and interactions with local manufacturers and suppliers, to improve the participants’ knowledge on packaging technologies and the preservation of food products.
Concerning the future activities to be held in 2018, assessment studies in Ivory Coast, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Nigeria and Senegal are going to be organized, to improve a sustainable business model and to identify a national food packaging center implemented to follow this model.
In conclusion, the proposal for a Project Regional Workshop was discussed, proposing the World Export Development Forum (WEDF) as main location. The WEDF is an annual forum hosted by the International Trade Centre and the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry of Zambia and it will be held in Lusaka, Zambia, in September 2018. IMA was invited to participate at the event.
Mr. Alberto Vacchi, IMA Chairman and CEO, has expressed his satisfaction for the activities carried out by FAO and ITC. He has confirmed the support of IMA to this Project, affirming that the reduction of food loss and waste in the poor areas of the World represents a crucial issue and a primary objective, together with a responsible and sustainable packaging technology.
This important project falls under the Group’s IMA ZERO program, which is the evolution of IMA’s commitment to Sustainable Development and its pledge towards the contribution to the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the Agenda 2030 in the industrial manufacturing sector. Its ultimate goal is to minimize environmental impact in industrial manufacturing, while promoting and creating a working and living habitat that always puts people and biodiversity at the center. The project is declined in 4 programs: LOW (Low-Impact Program, aiming at emission reduction); NOP (No-Plastic Program, aiming at plastic use reduction); E-MOB (Sustainable mobility, fostering a more sustainable mobility); YOU (Human-Centric Program, promoting projects that put people’s wellness at the center).