Future-forward solutions that are solving SA’s urban food crisis

Think technology and farming don’t mix? Think again. Local entrepreneur and founder of Homefarm, Michael Currin, is proving that technology can democratise anything, including farming.

His solutions are enabling individuals and businesses to grow their own fresh, organic foods on site and indoors (no large tracts of land necessary) to supply families, communities and customers.

It’s the perfect blend of innovative entrepreneurialism and social conscience. Michael began working on the idea for Homefarm almost a decade ago because he wanted to empower urban communities to grow their own food. Deeply interested in how urban migration disrupts the world and our food systems – and the food supply issues that many African nations face – Michael started thinking about how he could best apply his skills to solve the problem.

It's the stuff all great entrepreneurial start-ups are made from – the ability to connect the dots and marry a need to a specific skill set, network or product. The result? True disruption, which doesn’t necessarily mean solving a new problem. In this case, climate change and urban migration will continue to disrupt food chains, but very often, innovative, disruptive solutions are the result of looking at old challenges in new ways.

Technology has of course supported this. But a view to the future helps too. In Michael’s case, because Homefarm was launched 8 years ago, his business was firmly grounded and ready for growth when the pandemic hit, and people started looking into growing their own food at home. Add to the that the growing awareness that food sustainability will be a real issue in the future, and Homefarm is well positioned to make a huge mark on the world. There’s even a solution for loadshedding!

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About the Author

Elisheva Gilbert
Chief Marketing Officer, Sasfin Holdings Limited

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