Friday, 11 January 2019

Looking Forward to the Year Ahead

Written by  Alexandra Spieldoch

Dear CTI Friends,

Warmest wishes for 2019! With hunger on the rise, increased uncertainty, and all the changes in our climate, I reflect daily on what CTI along with our supporters can do to help bring about positive change in a way that is ‘transformative’ instead of simply ‘transactional.’  I see the opportunity to address systemic problems and bottlenecks in the food system that are directly linked to poverty and lack of access to basic resources that are indeed transformative. Because of your support, thousands of people are growing in their ability to sustainably feed themselves and their communities with CTI’s transformative postharvest solutions. And with your continued support, we will have the opportunity to have a positive impact on millions more.

This past year, we  expanded our staff in Africa and the U.S. to meet demand for oursolutions. In Senegal, as part of the USAID|Yombal mbojj project, we ordered and placed 60 new grain threshers with farmers and local entrepreneurs200 more are on the way along with 300 multi-crop grinders are being purchased by Senegalese farmers and entrepreneurs to feed their communitiesWe launcheda mobile communications platform so that clients can reach us real time if they have any issuesand tell us what kinds of support are most helpful. We even trained a new group of field technicians to help with repair and maintenance of machines within communities. And, we organized 164 promotional events across the country and received requests from 421 new interested customers as well as partners in-country.

Another key achievement that we made was to invest more in womenas food entrepreneurs. In 2018 we met with 633 women farmers from 197 villages and organized three trainings on basic business skills with our tools. Today, women’s groups are already organizing with our tools and training to prepare and sell different food items such as baby food and grain flours to sustain their families and communities. 

In Malawi, we partnered with the USAID Soybean Innovation Lab to build and testwith commercial farmers a motorized multi-crop thresher that can process maize and other crops 40X faster than traditional methods.With support from the McKnight Foundation, we also launched new research in the central and southern parts of the country to develop businesses in food processing with organized farmer groups. 


SIL Team With Thresher

CTI and SIl Team Inspecting the Multi-Crop Thresher in Malawi

trained and additional 577 farmers, including youth groups and savings and loan groups in Mozambique, wherewintroduced our portfolio of peanut tools for the first time. Farmers were able to shell their peanuts in 2.5 hoursversus nearly 35 hours when shelling by hand.  Our contribution resulted in overwhelming demand for shelling services – sheller operators quickly extended their operation to up to 12 hours per day to accommodate demand.

Across programs in 2018, we impacted over 75,000 people. We are laying the groundwork for communities to sustain themselves, create livelihoods, and thrive. The work we are doing with partners and supporters like you will improve nutrition and livelihoods of millions of people.  

BeatriceBeatrice, a peanut farmer in Malawi using CTI tools.

Looking ahead into 2019, I am passionate about expanding our work across sub-Saharan Africa and reaching more people where there is the greatest need. We are focused on the contribution we can make to increase the quantity of available and accessible nourishing food, eliminate women’s drudgery in food processing and provide postharvest business solutions for the rural poor that are long-lasting.

thank you for your support in 2018 and hope you will continue to support CTI in 2019. 

With your help, we can move to a whole other level and reach thousands and eventually millions of people throughout Africa.

Are you in? 


Alexandra Spieldoch
CTI Executive Director