The pronouncement by the Minister of State for Agriculture, Hon. Christopher Kibazanga, was greeted by great applauds and an accompanying ovation from everyone present, including farmers groups, District Local Government Officials and other stakeholders. But what was special about it?
Hon. Kibazanga, having given complementary remarks earlier took to the podium accompanied by Tine Deschacht Program Officer Development Cooperation from the Belgian Embassy and made the long-awaited announcement, "I now declare that VECO East Africa is now rikolto" as he unveiled the plaque with the new flashy logo.
For many that graced the occasion, this served as the main highlight for the afternoon of December 7th 2017. After more than 20 years, VECO East Africa, a renown brand in Eastern Uganda for its collaborative support to small holder farmers would hence forth be known by a new brand name; rikolto!
“Things that don’t change don’t grow and develop. You must change and rebrand yourself to fit in the new circumstances because the world is changing,” Hon. Christopher Kibazanga said.
rikolto, an Esperanto word for ‘harvest,’ had earlier been unveiled as the brand identity for the global Vredeseilanden/VECO brand. Quite often, different speakers found themselves intermixing the former and the new brands in their speeches, quickly acknowledging that a nomenclature transition was still happening.
Ms. Caroline Kahamutima, Rikolto’s Uganda Country Manager had earlier remarked that business as usual could not suffice and therefore, new ideas were necessary. The transition to Rikolto, she said, would significantly change the way the organization carried their business, as an international network organization that builds bridges between different stakeholders to ensure that Uganda’s food systems are sustainable.