The Future of Food


Source: Diaspora Kitchen

Source: Diaspora Kitchen

Did you know, today, worldwide, for every malnourished person, there are two people who are obese or overweight? 868 million undernourished people and 1.5 billion obese or overweight people globally – according to Eating in 2030: trends and perspectives 2018 report. Guess where the highest concentration of malnourished people reside, yes your guess is obviously as good as mine. Africa remains the continent with the highest prevalence of undernourished people in the world. Affecting almost 21% of the population (more than 256 million people), South America follows immediately after with 5% in 2017, and fewer in Northern America and Europe with 2.5%, according to the state of food security and nutrition in the world 2018 report.

Did you know 36 million people die every year from lack of food and 29 million people from too much food globally? This is a perfect case of choosing your demon, would you rather die from the lack of or too much food? My answer is neither.

And did you know one-third of all food produced worldwide is made for feeding livestock? In addition, a growing share of agricultural land is used for the production of biofuel. This means we are choosing to feed both animals and automobiles instead of people (Eating in 2030: trends and perspectives 2018 report).

Also, did you know every year 1.3 billion tons of perfectly edible food is wasted, while 868 million people suffer from hunger globally? This is the state of food in the world at the moment, we are likely headed for hunger, aren’t we?

Source: Video Blocks

Source: Video Blocks

Right now there’s so much conversation about the importance of food, which is why we see an increasing number of Africans adopting health consciousness and consuming more organic food as opposed to the synthesized meals. However, following the obvious trend of emotional eating the conversation would soon shift from the importance of food to the importance of healthy eating. People are anxious with weight loss and as such take up unhealthy dietary plans that do more harm than good. The growing scale of depression and emotional ill health in Africa is causing people to find solace in food without much care of the composition of what they put in their mouths.

The future of food is seemingly bleak but the great part is, it can be salvaged. We do not have to adopt the knee jerk approach where we have to wait for the future to come before we implement measures to deal with it.


What can we do?

  • Use the high interconnectedness that currently exists among people to disseminate information around the importance of healthy eating.

  • Institutions should promote the adoption of lifestyles and eating habits that favor the consumption of foods that contribute to a healthy diet and have less impact on the eco-system of the planet

  • The industry should focus more on promoting the purchase of healthy foods and use balanced price leverage to discourage the use of junk food

  • Strategies should be deployed to encourage people to find the space and time to devote to meals in the company of other people. This way they are motivated to eat healthier meals.

  • More so, the food industry must continue to develop new forms of convenience foods that have a high level of nutrition

Gingerbox is Delivering Good Health To Families in Lagos, Nigeria


Via Gingerbox

Via Gingerbox

One challenge most people eating healthy in Nigeria face is a slight difficulty in access to healthy, fresh and reliable fruits/vegetables.. Super markets and malls in town may have little to few fruits and vegetable supply for consumers, this leaves most buyers no option but returning to the very busy, hectic local markets.

A Nigerian Startup which started operation late 2014 took up the task on the shoulders of Healthy eating  Lagosians to supply and deliver fresh healthy food to buyers. The startup Gingerbox which was formerly known as Jaramall decided to focus on healthy food, a decision made off feedback from users on their former platform. The feedback highlighted a market in online delivery of healthy food.

Via gingerbox

Via gingerbox

Originally Gingerbox focused on delivery to corporate organizations only, but today the startup has expanded to serve individuals and families in Lagos. Users subscribe to receive boxed produced off the variety of carefully planned boxers. Available boxes range from Fruits & vegetables to meat/sea food to dried nuts and fruits.  Following the selection and order, Gingerbox delivers.

Building up to the release of our comprehensive report on “The Future of Food in Africa”, TINK Africa is focusing on Food and Drink in Nigeria, Africa and the World. From new technologies in the food industry to new packaging ideas to New 21 Century African kitchen. Stay with us to get the full report here on our tinkafrica.

Almost Every Nigerian Food Recipe You Need is on this App


via dobbyssignature 

via dobbyssignature 

So your Mom wants you to sit with her in Kitchen, the Kitchen is hot and as advised by the old saying “If you can’t take the heat in the Kitchen, you get out”, you stand and leave. But how then do you learn how to make those delicious indigenous soups like Mom?

Well an app is here to save you, the Nigerian Food Recipes app. Yep, the name of the app may not reflect so much “creativity or deep thought” but the app comes in very handy for the 21st century kitchen. As the name implies, the application with its simple design guides users through easy step by step procedures for preparing Nigerian foods. Fully equipped with numerous indigenous Nigerian meals, the NFR app is filling the gap many young Nigerians are craving and in the most amazing way.

Though Nigerian food blogs are springing up left, right and center, there is still a huge gap in passing the rich food local food culture to the new Nigerian generation. The Nigerian Recipes App serves as a pool of  recipes. Available on playstore, the app has about 50,000 - 100,000 downloads with lots of positive reviews.

Interested? Download the app HERE.

Building up to the release of our comprehensive report on “The Future of Food in Africa”, TINK Africa is focusing on Food and Drink in Nigeria, Africa and the World. From new technologies in the food industry to new packaging ideas to New 21 Century African kitchen. Stay with us to get the full report here on our tinkafrica.


Are Food Fairs the future of food commercialization?


The first most important thing to every Nigerian, is unarguably food! Then if it is fused with socialization, all the better; it is on the basis of this that we have drawn a thesis that, food fairs are the future of Food Commercialization. I would like to quickly highlight the advantages of fairs and generally place it under the umbrella of "the circular flow/ collaboration effect". Food fairs are a somewhat direct and indirect form of advertising and marketing for the brand; with immediate positiveness as-

//acquiring new customers;

//simultaneously employing a system to create new customer database; 

//First hand customer insight via tete-a-tete 

// Introduction and re-introduction of products and services

// Gaining Media Attention

While the benefits for visitors according to the Exhibition & Event Association of Australia are as follows:

// Complete, synthetic and neutral information,
// Excellent comparability of offers,
// The possibility of objective assessment,
// 54% of visitors visited the fair to see the new products or services,
// 48 % of visitors looking for information,
// 40 % would like to be updated with the new technologies,
// 15 % attend fairs to establish business contacts.

While we think we have subconsciously handed over the keys of our lives to social media and the internet, According to 91% of 250 surveyed CEOs of U.S. corporations , the Internet does not replace the fair:

//Personal contact is irreplaceable (55 %),

//the product should be seen and discussed (35%),

//answers to the questions raised at the fair are more complete (10 %).

// Internet can be used as a source of fair information:

//presentation of the company in the online catalog of exhibitors

// year-round promotion of market news on the websites of th the MTP

(Source: International Association for Exhibition Management)

This, of course, is not without downsides which include but are not limited to healthy/unhealthy competition at the fairs and even beyond; time, money and cost for hosting and transporting yourself to these fairs. I am certain and you can agree with me that the positive outweighs the negatives for both the producer/ brand and the customer/consumer.



Food industry needs technology too


Samsung food fight commercial / Photo via youtube 

Samsung food fight commercial / Photo via youtube 

Food wastage is a world issue and Nigeria is feeling the weight of this issue till today. With imminent food shortage and news of possible famine starting from the northern part of the country, prices of food around the country has doubled and agricultural experts are pointing to wastage as one of the major root causes of this.

Globally, the food and beverage industry seems to be left behind in terms of availability of tech disruptive solutions like education, entertainment , fashion industries. According to the Sales Manager, North West & Central Africa Refrigeration and Air Conditioning, Danfoss, Youssef Zitouni, Nigeria’s food waste has hit $750 billion yearly. In his statement he highlighted that “80% of food produced in Nigeria go to waste.”

A recent study by IGD, a research charity in UK which focuses on retail and food industry issues, has found that consumers are interested in new solutions. According to the study, over 20% of consumers are would like technology to help tackle food wastage.

However, some of such apps already exist, with most focusing on meal inspiration and planning to avoid waste. Direct tackling of food waste remains a more difficult area. Currently, a range of apps exist but are largely restricted by area and market. One good and successful example is FoodCloud, an Irish Charity connecting producers and supermarkets with charities that redistribute unused food. Rarer are apps  aiding consumers themselves. One good example of such rare app is the Dutch based app NoFoodWasted which alerts shoppers of soon-to-be-expire and discounted food items in supermarkets. Today the app has an average of 20,000 users daily. Users can also upload their shopping list and receive alerts when relevant ingredients come online.

Salt and Straw Sample / Photo via fastcompany 

Salt and Straw Sample / Photo via fastcompany 

In the same vein, a popular Portland-based ice cream parlour Salt and Straw, famous for its decadent and often bold adventurous flavors like Chocolate Caramel Potato Chip Cupcake is drawing attention to food wastage in their recent campaign where they are offering customers new special ice cream options made from ingredients that would have been thrown away. For example, in the special batches, the Spiced Rum and Apple Butter flavour will be made from bruised apples and rum-soaked spices rescued from Portland’s East Side Distillery. The new menu which is estimated to save around 2,000 pounds of food is more or less a tiny drop compared to the gross wastage in the country, but the co-founders are focusing more on the educational aspect of the project; trying to raise awareness about the potential of tapping into the food waste, as a viable business opportunity.

Tomatoes on display in a Nigerian Market / Photo via

Tomatoes on display in a Nigerian Market / Photo via

Though the Nigerian tech industry is flourishing, we need to see more local, relevant solutions tackling real Nigeria issues like how BudgIT is tackling corruption and transparency in governance. More solutions are needed in the areas of security, food distribution, pollution etc.