Temo Expo gives a glimpse of the future

Baitshepi Sekgweng

The first ever ‘Letsema le Bolotse’ Exposition by National Agricultural Research and Development Institute (NARDI) has been seen as an important step towards developing the country’s agricultural sector.

Christened the ‘Temo Expo’, the well-attended event took place last Wednesday at NARDI’s spacious Research Centre in Sebele, with hundreds turning up to get a glimpse of the latest Agricultural technologies.

Officiating at the show, which will become a yearly occurrence, Vice President, Slumber Tsogwane, said such initiatives are crucial in growing the sector.

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“NARDI has found it fit to bring together farmers, technology vendors, input suppliers and financial institutions through ‘Temo Expo’ to fine-tune production plans. These efforts should lead towards the attainment of SDG [Sustainable Development Goals] 2, which emphasizes on food security and sustainable agriculture and SDG 17, which emphasizes on strengthening partnerships for sustainable development,” said Tsogwane.

Challenging NARDI to keep up the good work, the VP added, “I implore you to continue exploring additional ways of enhancing agricultural productivity through adoption of technologies very relevant and affordable to local farmers.”

For his part, Minister of Agriculture, Fidelis Molao said industrialising the sector is at the forefront of the ministry’s mission.

“Our vision is to cultivate a resilient, competitive and thriving agricultural sector in Botswana. By fostering innovation and embracing sustainable policies, NARDI plays a crucial role in propelling us towards industrialization. Through the convergence of expertise, resources and visionary initiatives you are not only embracing change but actively shaping it,” praised Molao.

The Expo aims to provide a forum where farmers, companies, professionals and industry experts can share knowledge in an informal setting. It also seeks to improve local farmers’ awareness of new, innovative agricultural equipment and methods.

These efforts are ultimately intended to support the recently introduced, Temo Letlotlo Programme.

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Designed to improve food security and create lasting employment opportunities, Temo Letlotlo focuses on sustainable agricultural practices and promoting a mindset shift in how farming is approached.

“Temo Letlotlo is envisaged to stimulate growth of agriculture value chains making the sector an economic sector of choice for investors,” said Minister Molao.
The Expo also saw the unveiling of Botswana National Technology Laboratory for Agriculture (BONATLA), a joint venture between NARDI and African Agriculture Company.

Housed at the Research Centre, the Lab is intended to revolutionize Botswana’s agricultural sector by advancing mechanization and supporting sustainable farming through research, innovation, and collaboration in equipment development and services.

NARDI has also teamed up with Stanbic Bank on the Stanbic Bank Accelerator Programme, tasked with facilitating youth access to finance in agriculture value chains.

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