Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of articles, in partnership with Fabulously Fit Fine, to introduce the Accra FoodHack event and challenges to be addressed during the hackathon weekend. Accra FoodHack is brought to you by esSense 13 and powered by City Investments Company Ltd.
Have you ever heard of a hackathon focused on food? Exactly, me neither. But it’s happening in the city of Accra. Although happening in Accra, its impact goes beyond the borders of Mother Ghana. I know at least it reaches the perimeter of West African meals. It is happening between January 8th & 9th 2016 at the Impact Hub in Nyaniba. Yup you have enough time to strap and gear up for this event. Even though this event is going to be amazing, the primary objective is to get sharp minds of ‘foodies’ and ‘techies’ to brainstorm and develop practical solutions to challenges in starting a food or beverage business, the food supply chain system, food packaging and customer experiences with food businesses. As you can sense, this food hack is looking at revolutionizing the food industry on a whole. So do not leave your thinking caps at home.
The food space is huge; so are the challenges. Of course no food related hurdle is higher than the other. However, the Alpha challenge set for this hackathon is … *drum roll* ”How do we use Ghanaian food to increase local and international tourism in the country?” The varying solutions to be presented for this mega challenge should have these areas covered: Nutrition, Convenience, Sustainability, and Employment. For more information about this food hack, visit http://essense13.com/hack/
As part of the Hack, there will be a fun activity on the 9th of January dubbed a ‘photo walk’. This happens on a Saturday morning. Teams will spend the early morning snapping pictures that capture the food scene in Accra and sharing it on social media with a hashtag that will be made available at the event. There will be prizes for the best scenery, which communicates the food scene in Accra.
If you are a newbie to hackathons don’t fret. We gotcha, here are some things you should do and expect:
Rule #1 – Don’t come alone, bring friends. To be a top dawg in a hackathon you need a clique. [You don’t have to worry about bringing your neighborhood gang. We only recommend that if most of your hood members are ‘foodies’, ‘techies’ and got some ‘Steve jobs’ in them.] In order to be part of a badass hackathon team, you should be at least sociable (be updated on pop culture, technology, news and anything conversation-friendly). You got the point, don’t come alone; bring friends, in fact your entire neighborhood won’t be a bad idea. If you already have a suitable team then easily register your team at accrafoodhack.eventbrite.com
Rule #2 – Icebreakers and networking: There will be icebreakers at the beginning and during the event, so are special event designed for you to network and expand your niche. This is the moment you sniff out the wolves at the party. (There are various types of people who go for hackathons; we can talk about that later. For winning purposes, Fabfitfine recommend you focus on the wolves.) We are talking about those “techies” and “foodies” who will be attending with their eyes on the prize. Ideally, these are folks you want to team up with. Some of them might have personalities clashing with yours but as a soldier on a mission, we suggest you suck it up, network, enjoy the event.
Rule #3 – Be proactive: To sniff out a wolf, you need a bait. In other words, be active and hands on. In a jungle or a mountain side, we would need a rabbit or human target, but intellectual wolves are on another level. When having a casual conversation with a look-like-a-wolf type of person, you don’t want to come off so strong. Here’s what to do; ask remote but related questions about the Alpha challenge and the process behind it. Doing this with a positive attitude will earn you a high five; you can pat yourself on the back. It’s also an entry point to discern if that wolf is worth partnering with. It’s a start.
On a good day, the rules above are for regular people. (That said, who defines ‘regular?’) If you are a maverick and can do a whole lot, like climbing a mountain and retrieving the Quran, or fighting HYDRA with a club, or even capable of dying for the sins of this world, then you are already ahead of the game and obviously don’t need the above rules. So without wasting much time and to ensure your admission to this epic event – visit accrafoodhack.eventbrite.com to register yourself or your team.
This article was written by Fabulously Fit & Fine @fabfitfine, for the Accra FoodHack.