Bridging the Gap


Cracking the Nut 2015

This year the Cracking the Nut Conference was held in Lusaka, Zambia on March 2 &3, 2015. Our fifth conference brought together around 250 participants representing 34 countries and included a mix of development practitioners,agribusinesses, donors, investors and financial institutions. The theme, Expanding Rural & Agricultural Markets Amid Climate Change, was well received by participants.

Below are a few highlights from the conference:


It was a Cracking the Nut first with live animals attending the conference! iDE brought participants’ senses alive through an exciting and interactive session on how to utilize its Farm Business Adviser Model to develop a value proposition on raising crocodiles for marketable products.



Given Lubinda

The Honorable Given Lubinda, Zambian Minister of Agriculture and Livestock, made a surprise appearance on the second day of the conference to welcome participants and say a few words. “We need to take care of people as well as climate. We need to choose both.”


We want to thank those in attendance and those that presented in plenary and breakout sessions. We encourage everyone to continue the conversation and we hope to see you at Cracking the Nut 2016!

Feedback from Participants

“The climate change focus was also very timely, and I’m glad it generated discussion.”

“Case studies from different countries were so enriching to the learning component.”

“The contacts we made and the insight that we gained into rural agricultural markets is very valuable.” – Eduardo Mendias, The Toro Company

Conference Publication Coming Soon

Every year following the conference, Connexus creates a summary of the main lessons learned which includes highlights of unique innovations and experiences shared. The publication will be available in mid to late April on the conference website: