A critical factor to some of Africa’s biggest development goals lies in agriculture. This is is because to a large extent, Africa is still an agro-economy and the Agricultural sector is an engine of job creation. With about 60 percent of total employment in sub-Saharan Africa allocated to farming. The Agriculture sector is also a driver of inclusive and sustainable development and by 2025 the sector is projected to add more jobs to the African economy. However, Africa’s agriculture sector is facing mounting challenges and the blockchain technology is being used to solve most of these problems.
While Agricultural production rate of the continent has increased, it still lags behind other regions. Considering the rise in population, Africa’s food system will be further strained by a population projection of 1.3 billion by 2050. This will cause a problem for food security which is a challenge as climate change also threatens the sector. Blockchain based agricultural firms such as Agrikore have began creating solutions that suit the African problem. Agrikore is a smart-contracting, digital payments marketplace system focused on providing information, product and a marketplace to stakeholders in the agricultural sector.
Employing the blockchain technology to Africa’s agriculture will boost the sectors and create sustainable development. For instance, BitMari a blockchain startup has set up a platform to launch smart farm contract which will aid agricultural funding in the continent. The firm is developing an application that allows buyers to purchase farming contracts for agricultural projects in Zimbabwe. Thereby creating the needed fund for the sector. Also, in Ethiopia, cryptocurrency startup Cardano signed an MOU with the government to use its developers use its blockchain for the local agriculture industry. Cryptocurrency exchange, Paxful is not left out as the exchange poured bitcoins into the agricultural and educational sector of Rwanda. The blockchain technology is also helping farmers get loan as a crypto startup is bringing cryptocurrencies to the agricultural space, providing 50,000 farmers with loans worth US$10mn. The project which is a collaboration between Block Commodities, Wala, Dala, and FinComEco will develop and operate a variety of platforms, projects and initiatives in the agricultural commodity markets Africa. On the other hand, Kenyan agri-tech startup, Twiga Foods partnered with IBM Research to provide microloans to about 220 food stall retailers across Kenya with the use of a blockchain-based financing system.
All these projects are focused on transforming the actor knowing just how important such a sector is to the economy of the continent. From solutions that can be accessed on the mobile phones to loans, to smart contracts and even down to tracking in the supply chain managements of agricultural products. The blockchain is making a head way in the continent and hopefully the effectiveness of the technology will encourage governments to adopt it.
What do you think about struggling nations employing the blockchain technology? Share your opinion with us in the comment section below.
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Waves to Launch Blockchain-Based Games Marketplace with The Abyss
Blockchain Platform Waves and blockchain distribution platform – The Abyss will jointly launch blockchain-based marketplace of digital goods and in-game items.
The co-operation will see the building of a universal marketplace of all tradable goods and in-game items offered by Abyss partner game developers through their games.
The marketplace will enable users to purchase items with Abyss Tokens and sell to other users no matter what supported game it was purchased from. This, according to Waves will open another way for game developers to monetize their games on The Abyss.
Waves revealed the Abyss tokens will be integrated with the Waves Blockchain thereby enabling developers to connect The Abyss Token operations directly into their Waves-based games.
This will be made possible and easier by the release of an SDK and provision of technical assistance by Abyss.
Founder, The Abyss Konstantin Boyko-Romamovsky is quoted saying “The Abyss development team has already started preparation for the integration of Waves solution. The respective API methods and libraries will be added to the platform SDK and offered to game studios and developers.”
As a mutual benefiting arrangement, games built on the Waves blockchain will be able to utilize the distribution network of The Abyss therefore getting exposure to a wide audience of gamers.
Speaking on the arrangement between both firms, CEO, Waves Platform, Sasha Ivanov said, “The integration of Waves technology will enable The Abyss to create one of the best and the most advanced digital marketplaces in the video game industry. Apart from boosting up blockchain adoption, it is also supposed to increase the speed of processing trading transactions”.
Based on the Ethereum blockchain, The Abyss is a digital distribution platform for online video games with a unique revenue sharing system. The Abyss offers browser, client and blockchain games and provides game studios with additional customer benefits, from community features to marketing tools. Part of the income generated by sales of games & services is distributed between users in the form of rewards for various activities available on the platform.
A Proposal Has Been Made To Move ZCash from POW to POS
A ZCash Improvement Proposal ZIP was submitted to the ZCash community to migrate the privacy focused blockchain from the Proof of Work protocol to Proof of Stake.
The proposal was made by a user rebekah93. According to the community member, “Zcash was launched using Proof of Work. This meant that as well as removing the risk of POS being in some way faulty, the developers could focus on snark development rather than proof of stake development. Now the situation is a little different, as POS is a little mature and shielded transactions in zcash have come leaps and bounds.
This means that we should be able to switch from POW to POS without diverting developers too heavily away from other protocol improving works.”
The motivation according to rebekah93 for the improvement proposal was “by not wanting to have ‘destroying the planet’ as one of zcash’s most prominent achievements.
This is related to the amount of power needed to maintain the proof of work blockchains with Bitcoin being the highest consumer as the largest pow blockchain.
In order to achieve consensus, the community will have to answer some questions such as:
what properties does it want from POW? BFT or not?, Which are the best POS protocols that satisfy the needed properties, who gets to have the loudest/definitive say, when will it be implemented, who will implement it, will there be a transition period, when will the transition go live?
The ZIP which is currently in draft stage has attracted comments from the zcash community with one member Faddat defending POW by saying it doesn’t harm the environment and that it is one of the most efficient uses of stranded energy. According to him, POS chains have more favourable performance characteristic, but POW is more secure.
Another member of the Zcash community by the name OliverNChalk is of the opinion that the migration to POS should be put on hold and wait to see how the Ethereum imminent migration to POS goes as this would give an idea of how POS looks in the ‘wild’.
A member of the Zcash foundation by the name Sonya said concerning the ZIP “I like proof-of-work because the economics are straightforward and the model is battle-tested. I don’t think proof-of-stake has been around long enough that we should jump on it — maybe another couple of years.”
The proposal was created over 40 hours ago, it has received 1500 views and 12 replies. At current it is still a draft.