What is Giving Compass?
We connect donors to learning resources and ways to support community-led solutions. Learn more about us.
Giving Compass' Take:
• Thin Lei Win explains how entrepreneurs are fighting for gender equality in farming, an incredibly unequal field.
• How can funders and impact investors work to support women farmers?
• Learn how women farmers are changing the field.
When Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja-Kuye started Nigeria's first vertical farming company, she already had years of experience advising governments under her belt — yet, as a woman, she still struggled to be taken seriously.
"In the beginning, even my staff, when they first come on board, are more likely to listen to my husband before me," said the founder of Fresh Direct Nigeria, which grows vegetables hydroponically — farming in water instead of soil.
Women make up nearly half the global workforce in farming, but many say their contribution has long gone unrecognized, particularly in developing countries.
Adelaja-Kuye is among a small but growing group of women entrepreneurs who are helping to change that, many using new technologies to produce food in more sustainable ways.
The 35-year-old, who started farming in the heart of the Nigerian capital Abuja in 2015 and uses shipping containers, said she wanted to support those who did not conform to the stereotype of the poor, uneducated subsistence farmer.
In 2018, companies working on food and agricultural technology globally raised a record $16.9 billion, according to AgFunder, a San Francisco-based online investment platform for these businesses.
Yet estimates based on available gender information show only 4% of that went to startups with one or more female founders, said Louisa Burwood-Taylor, head of media and research at AgFunder.
Read the full article about fighting for gender equality in farming by Thin Lei Win at Global Citizen.