Akwese Majolie on Regenerative Food Systems in Cameroon


Quivira Coalition’s New Agrarian Program Colorado Manager Taylor Muglia sits down with Akwese Mbendang Milene Majolie. Akwese was an intern this summer with Quivira’s Carbon Ranch Initiative. Working remotely from Rwanda where she attended school at the African Leadership University Rwanda, she helped with biochar projects and educational guides, and expanded her knowledge of regenerative agriculture with Quivira staff located in New Mexico. Originally from Cameroon, Akwese is passionate about sharing regenerative techniques with smallholder farmers in her region and innovating ways to reduce post-harvest loss. In this episode, she shares her story and dreams for the future.

Find Akwese on InstagramYouTube, and LinkedIn. And her project Chakula Poda, on InstagramFacebook, and LinkedIn.

Music attribution:
Wanderlust by Scott Buckley


2:39- Where are you calling in from today?
2:57- First experiences in agriculture. In Cameroon, most people use agriculture for primary income. As a little girl, learned all about planting, harvesting, selling. 
4:00- Favorite plants/animals to grow- poultry, maize, beans, potatoes, cassava, a variety.
5:03- What do you study at the African Leadership Institute. Not conventional university. Studies Global Challenges. My focus is agriculture/conservation. Students lead 70-80% of the work. Also interested in agro-processing to reduce post-harvest loss. Real-world experiences guide the learning. 
8:54- Where does your work take place? Rwanda and Cameroon.
10:32- Cameroon climate, flora, fauna, agricultural cultivation. Rich in biodiversity. Cross-section of African continent.
14:19- Cameroon’s subsistence agriculture: bean corn, potato, cassava, rubber, plantain, cocoa. Poultry, cattle.
15:00- What is the general size of the typical smallholder farm in Cameroon? 1-10 acres.
15:55- Agricultural issues and solutions in Cameroon- lack of good practices. Lack of knowledge. Just surviving, so don’t think about the impacts of their actions. Drought gets worse every year, symptom of soil health.
18:31- Drought is a symptom in larger water cycle.
19:07- What are the challenges in helping them adopt regenerative practices? Akwese’s mother is her first start in introducing regen ag. Mom was able to experiment and share with colleagues.
21:30- Change happens best in agriculture with peer-to-peer learning
23:15- Tell us more about your internship at Quivira Coalition. 
23:57- What are your goals?
27:15- Tell us more about your agro-processing venture to process damaged tomatoes into tomato powder to reduce post-harvest loss. 
29:45- What brings you joy? 
31:33- Outro, thank you Akwese!


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