SWFF Program News
November 21, 2016
Blooming in the Desert: 
Groasis Saves Water and Reforests the World
Pieter Hoff used to breed flower bulbs, but in 2010, he turned his attention to a different kind of bloom: making trees grow in the desert. The idea was sparked by Hoff's observation of food scarcity in the developing world. If he could apply the tactics he uses for tulip growing, he thought, could he impact the one billion people on the planet who don't have enough food to eat?

Hoff says deforestation is one of the biggest factors in climate change and food security. So he developed a new tool that could reduce a seedling's use of water by 90 percent and increase its survival rate by 90 percent, prompting him to found Groasis Tech, a company focused on advancing water-saving technology for arid climates. The  Waterboxx he created is a protective polypropylene cocoon that harvests water to keep a seedling alive in its first vulnerable years of life. 
Innovator News
SWFF Updates
  • Securing Water for Food finalized its midterm review this month. The report aimed to improve SWFF's efficiency in achieving its goals, provide recommendations for the assessment of the fourth call applications, and give input for future planning. The report found that SWFF has succeeded in achieving the goals and milestones it had set forth, and the program will address a select set of the recommendations and future work plans. 
  • The SWFF Founding Partners, USAID, Sweden through the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), the Government of South Africa, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, met in Stockholm to review program accomplishments, evaluate mid-term review findings, and make plans for the coming year.
  • Preparations are underway for the Second Ag Innovation Investment Summit: Connecting Agripreneurs on March 13-17, 2017 at the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Johannesburg, South Africa. The gathering will convene current SWFF innovators, SWFF Founding Partners, the SWFF TA Facility, and the winners of the SWFF Fourth Global Call for Innovations.
  • The SWFF Technical Facility has announced a request for proposals for the provision of technical assistance services to SWFF awardees. The deadline is December 6, 2016. The assistance requirements are divided into 21 technical assistance service categories:
1. Business Development
2. Business Mentorship
3. Business Modeling
4. Gender Assessments / Considerations
5. Graphic Design, Branding, and Website Development
6. Human Resources Management
7. Legal Services
8. Market Research and Market Analysis
9. Materials Science
10. Media Training and Presentation Coaching
11. Organizational Capacity Building
12. Partner Identification and Partnerships
13. Policy and Advocacy
14. Product Development, Refinement, and Diversification
15. Public Relations and Communication
16. Smallholder Farmer Marketing and Sales
17. Supply Chain Development
18. Technical Writing and Scope of Work Development
19. Travel Services (Conferences/Investor Workshops/Meetings)
20. Environmental Review Assistance
21. Missing Markets (Marketing to Women and the Poor)
Industry News
1001 Words
The World Hope International team shows off their affordable greenhouses in the latest Innovator Snapshot. Click  here  to view.