AGRA, today announced the winners of the 2023 Women Agripreneurs of the Year Awards (WAYA2023) at the Africa Food Systems Forum, AGRF2023. It was held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

This year’s heroines hail from from Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, and Senegal received a total of $85,000 in grant funding during the ceremony in the categories of; Outstanding Value Adding Enterprise, Female Ag Tech Innovator, Young Female Agripreneur (Rising Star), and Grand Prize. Women Agriprenuer of the Year Award (WAYA), currently in its third edition was launched in 2021 at the AGRF Summit in Nairobi, Kenya.

WAYA recognizes women agripreneurs from across the continent, who have excelled in different segments of the agricultural value chain and have shown remarkable innovation in their businesses. The awards aim to create visibility for successful women, serving as positive role models, stimulating innovation, and fostering ambition among African women agripreneurs.

This year, the four exceptional winners were selected from a pool of 1,340 candidates spanning 42 African countries, all of whom, are recognized for their commitment to shaping the future of agri-food systems through pioneering new ideas, technologies, and sustainable practices to positively impact their communities.

This task was spearheaded by a panel of resolute and experienced judges that included; Betty Kiplagat the Government Affairs Leader for Africa & the Middle East at Corteva, Binta Touré Ndoye a Pan-African banker, Caroline Emond the CEO of International Dairy Federation, Marieme Esther Dassanou the Director of Gender Programs at MasterCard Foundation, ,and Judy Matu the National Executive Chairlady at AWAK. Speaking at the Awards ceremony, Dr. Agnes Kalibata, president of AGRA congratulated the remarkable laureates for their dedication towards transforming challenges into opportunities and re- shaping the landscape of Africa’s agro food systems.

The winners of the Women Agripreneurs of the Year Awards 2023 were;

1. Grand Prize Winner- Siny Samba, CEO, Le Lionceau (Senegal) .The award recognizes the female owned agri-business that exhibits the best innovations in the agri-business sector across all the categories.

2. Young Female Agripreneur (Rising Star) – Lucy Chioma Aniagolu, Founder, Agrodemy Enterprises, (Nigeria) . The award recognizes high-potential young females (below 35 years) demonstrating innovation and leadership in agribusiness.

3. Female AgriTech Innovator- Maryanne Ruguru Gichanga, Director, AgriTech Analytics (Kenya). The award recognizes female agripreneurs championing technological advancement in agribusiness.

4. Value-adding Enterprise – Bernice Dapaah, CEO, Bright Generation Community
Foundation-Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative (Ghana) .The award recognizes female-owned agribusinesses that are increasing the economic value and/or consumer appeal to agricultural products.