Young Expert at Olam - Zambia
YEP period 2017 - 2019, batch 13
Innovation manager, Northern Coffee Corporation (Olam), Zambia
As Young Expert Agrofood I will be working for Northern Coffee (NCCL) in Northern province, Zambia. This is the least developed area of Zambia, and NCCL is the largest private employer in the province. This makes the ongoing viability of the company of great concern for the development of the whole province, and in particular for the workers and residents of the towns near NCCL’s five estates.
My most important responsibility is increasing the production of superior hybrid coffee plants via from only a few thousand plants per year to a target of over 180000 plants in the next year. This variety has shown increased yield and resistance to diseases in trials, but due to problems with the vegetative production method has not yet been able to be used on a large scale. Solving these problems will require me to use not only my theoretical knowledge of plant science, but also my management and organizational skills.
I also provide support to other projects such as mapping and organizing quality analysis of different growing areas, guiding or providing information for students, observing waterlogging issues and preparing samples for nutrient analysis and establishment of 20Ha of plantation for sustainable firewood production.
Research, Monitoring, Problem Solving, Data Analysis, Project planning and Execution.
- 2014-2017: MSc Plant Sciences, Wageningen University, with specialization in crop science
- 2010-2014: BSc Plant sciences, Wageningen University, specialization Production and Ecology
Experience before YEP
During my masters I interned at the Australian Research of the Dutch Seed company, Enza Zaden. I investigated how onion floral morphology affects bee visitation and subsequently pollination.
After graduating from my MSc I worked as a lab assistant at Soilcares collecting data using their NIR spectronomy technology.