Newsletter Issue 82 • October 2019
Digital Technology Transforms Agriculture
and Rural Livelihoods
Digital technologies are bringing tremendous value to businesses and individuals, helping them make better decisions. Farmers are no exception. In agriculture, innovation in the digital space is helping farming families know when to plant and store crops and when to prepare for disease outbreaks.
 
Feed the Future is connecting smallholder farmers around the world to digital technologies and platforms, helping them protect against food loss and waste and grow more food.
 
Just this month, Feed the Future started new partnerships to connect underserved populations in emerging markets with digital solutions. Together with Mastercard, we’ll work to tailor digital solutions to the local context and leverage Mastercard’s digital technology and experience in financial services to help more farmers connect to banks, lenders, markets and more. Our new partnership with John Deere will also make digital tools and technologies more affordable for rural farmers to help them with decision-making and increase their incomes.
*** Halloween Highlight : Read about three spooky diseases threatening food.***
Feed the Future in Action
A young entrepreneur is using GrainMate, a tool that measures the moisture content of key crops, to help farmers reduce food loss.
Farmers around the world face a constant threat from crop diseases, but digital tools are making it easier for farmers to prepare for outbreaks.
Knowing when it will rain is crucial for farmers in Ghana – a new forecasting model has made it more predictable and helped maintain incomes.
Highlights From the World Food Prize
  Feed the Future partners gathered in Des Moines, Iowa, this October for the World Food Prize’s annual conference.
 
 While there, USAID’s Administrator Green highlighted private sector engagement, announced new Feed the Future partnerships, and thanked Ambassador Ken Quinn for all that he has done to make the World Food Prize an event not to be missed. This is his last year as the president of the World Food Prize Foundation.
New Findings!
The Board for International Food and Agricultural Development released a study titled “How the United States Benefits from Agricultural and Food Security Investments in Developing Countries."  The report outlines the positive impact of the United States' investments in agriculture abroad, highlighting the important returns this support provides to the American people.
USAID's Digital Strategy Open for Public Comment
USAID’s first-ever Digital Strategy is open for public comment from October 17 to November 3. To help ensure that the USAID Digital Strategy equips staff, empowers partners, improves internal processes, and shapes effective and efficient programming to accelerate partner countries’ journey to self-reliance, please provide your feedback .
Partner Stories
The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Horticulture is using innovation to help farmers grow quality vegetables in Cambodia. Wonder what a nethouse is? Read on. 
A Kenyan mobile phone platform is offering local farmers access to a transparent marketplace that offers higher prices for their goods.
Check out the key takeaways from a recent Feed the Future training on digital development for resilience and food security in Nairobi. 
Eggplant, a critical piece of Bangladesh’s food security puzzle, is highly susceptible to a devastating pest. Read about a new eggplant resistant to this pest.
Peace Corps Ghana brought together farmers, app developers and Peace Corps Volunteers to create a mobile app that can improve the local cashew value chain.

Photo Credits: Cover Photo - [Daljit Singh] Feature Articles – [Sesi Technologies]; [CIMMYT]; [Ignitia]
Feed the Future is the U.S. Government’s global hunger and food security initiative.