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The Open Wing Alliance (OWA) Africa hosted its annual summit for 2023 from the 28th to the 30th of November. This virtual summit was attended by 18 organizations from 11 African countries who are members of the coalition. 

This year’s summit consisted of three themes with each day having a different theme. On the first day the theme was ‘where we are’ which looked at facilitating opportunities to learn, network and share growth opportunities for OWA member organizations. A number of discussions took place about topics such as Africa’s first farmers directory, fostering ethical chicken farming, enhancing cage free campaigns and finding creative ways to deal with campaign challenges. 

The second day of the summit was focused on recapping and discussing an overview of the African Campaign 2023 by looking at successes, challenges, developments and lessons. The theme for the second day was ‘where we came from.’ As an instigator for the reflective engagement day two covered the road so far regarding the Africa multinational companies’ outreach; the equity of global cage-free commitments involving global companies in their cage-free transition in Africa and; corporate outreach to global companies operating in Africa. To close off the day, there was an opportunity to discuss ways in which OWA Africa organizations can leverage past achievements to secure more cage-free commitments. 

OWA Africa Summit’s third day rejuvenated the coalition and gave all the groups renewed energy and perspective. The state of egg production in Africa and what it means for the OWA strategy in Africa. During this session, we got a chance to learn about the state of the egg industry in Africa; analyzing different regions and the impact their respective state of egg production might have on the Africa strategy. Attendees had a discussion about whether the message should be to “go cage-free” or to “stay cage-free.” However, it was clear that due to differing context in African regions; perhaps the strategy should seek to empower organizations by giving them enough strategic resources to spearhead campaigns according to the context of their countries. The summit was concluded by looking at the year that 2023 has been, and sharing brief insight onto what is coming in 2024!

OWA Africa Summit 2023 was a tremendous success, and gave the group renewed belief that better farming systems are possible in Africa!

By Zwelisha Shobede

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