Okuafo Foundation, an agriculture technology solutions service provider, has become the first Ghana-based winner of the Zayed Sustainability Prize in the Food Category.
Okuafo Foundation received the award in the Food category for the development of a smartphone application using AI to determine and diagnose diseases in crops at an early stage – without an internet connection. This has helped 30,000 farmers reduce their crop losses and improve their harvest by 50 per cent, in Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, and Burkina Faso.
The Zayed Sustainability Prize’s ‘Food Category’ is open to small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and non-profits (NPOs), with the winner receiving US$600,000 to develop their solution or service. Among many objectives, this category typically rewards organisations that are committed to ending hunger and malnutrition, increasing agricultural productivity, or ensuring sustainable food production systems. Organisations must also demonstrate a vision and long-term plan to further deploy their solution and scale up their impact, as well as inspiring others to follow suit by advancing sustainable and human development.
Presented by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, Okuafo Foundation’s Co-founder and AI Research Lead, Mustapha Diyaol Haqq, accepted the award before an audience of world leaders, UAE government ministers, esteemed international dignitaries, and thousands of guests in attendance. This Prize’s showpiece, annual event is held each year at the start of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.
The annual US$3 million Prize is the UAE’s pioneering sustainability award for recognising impactful, innovative, and inspirational solutions of small to medium-sized companies, non-profit organisations, and high schools. The Prize is inspired by and in honour of the sustainability and humanitarian legacy of the founding father and 1st President of the UAE, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.
For the 2020 awards, a record number of 2,373 submissions were received from 129 countries, which were shortlisted to 76, then became 30 finalists. The eventual 10 winners included four organisations, in the Health, Food, Energy, and Water categories, and six Global High Schools – one per world region.
See the full list of winners HERE
To date, the Prize, including its previous winners across all categories, has directly and indirectly impacted the lives of over 335 million people. In the Global High Schools category, the number of people impacted by the Global High School winners is approximately 400,000.