Building an Africa that feeds itself | an interview with co-founder and CEO of WamiAgro, Caleb Edwards

Failure is just a lesson; borrow a leaf from WamiAgro’s Co-Founder and CEO, Caleb Edwards. Having gone through a series of failures in agriculture, Caleb and his co-founders identified a huge gap in the agriculture sector and an opportunity to create an impact. A journey that started 4 years ago, Caleb has proved that the opportunity he saw was viable.  

In 2022, WamiAgro, successfully;  

  • Onboarded over 11,000 farmers to its platform,  
  • provided input finance to about 10% of the farmers, 
  • cut down post-harvest loss by 70%,  
  • increased farmers’ income by 30% in the last 3 years and  
  • introduced climate-smart modern farming methods that particularly helped rice farmers reduce their methane emissions.  

How did he do it? How did he get here? Buckle up; it’s about to be an interesting read! 

GrowthAfrica Alumni GH

  • What does WamiAgro do, and what inspired this idea?  

This thing called failure led us here! We had tried farming independently, but this did not work out. This experience fueled the idea of why not build a system that enables farmers to have the opportunity to succeed better. We had identified 3 key challenges that we experienced and, with research, figured that this was not just a challenge to us, but other farmers in Ghana faced and are still facing. WamiAgro now focuses on solving these 3 challenges.   

WamiAgro is an AgTech business based in Accra, Ghana. We support farmers by providing them with; 

  1. Access to markets (bulk buyers). 
  2. Access to free agronomic technical information. 
  3. Access to credit.  
  • What impact has WamiAgro had so far?  

A lot has been achieved over the last 4 years. Over 11,000 farmers know about us in Ghana, and have signed up on our platform. Farmers have successfully increased their salaries and cut down post-harvest loss. The biggest impact has been bridging the gap between climate change policymakers and farmers. Agriculture alone contributes to a third of the climate change we are experiencing.  

The team at WamiAgro created a climate-smart agriculture strategy that introduced modern farming methods to farmers to reduce methane emissions. We see WamiAgro as the intermediary that is deploying direct information to the farmers. 

  • What keeps the team at WamiAgro excited about the future?   

The future is exciting for us. We want to create an Africa that feeds itself. We shouldn’t be having food crises because other countries not on the continent have a war. In the future, we want to serve over 1 million farmers across Africa, focusing on promoting food security that ensures Africa can feed itself and grow climate change-resilient and knowledgeable farmers.  

  • What have you been observing in the Ghanaian entrepreneurship landscape?  

2022 was nothing short of crazy! The market in Ghana was unstable; we currently have the ongoing global recession and erratic US dollar exchange rates, to mention a few. A difficult year in business but Accelerators and hubs helped us stay afloat. They helped with business linkages, consultancies, and product mapping. GrowthAfrica has particularly been influential in this.  

The volatile environment forced some businesses to close shop because of the unpredictable trends, but we feel lucky to have made it through. Entrepreneurship is an everyday adventure, but dedication, commitment, the flexibility of our team, and focus on the goal have kept us going. 

  • What is currently keeping you excited about entrepreneurship in Africa?  

I am excited that Venture Capital funds are growing in Africa year after year. There is growing attention in some African countries, and a young population means we will be more adventurous. Africa is also learning to own her responsibilities, so she will call her own shots soon! It’s an exciting time for Africa! 

  • What do you love most about what you do?  

What I love most is the impact stories that we have. When farmers faces beam with smiles when we go to the field is enough motivation. The feeling of fulfilment and making life meaningful for other people is more than money can buy! 

My team is another motivating factor. We have a genuinely excited team that comes to work daily; they love what we do at WamiAgro. If this is not proof enough of our impact and connection to the WHY, I don’t know what is.  

Also, 11,000 farmers know we exist and are on our platform! What a dream!