Morkporkpor Anku, GNA
Accra, Sept. 17, GNA – The World Food
Programme (WFP) has signed a partnership with Agrihouse Foundation towards the
8th edition of the Pre-harvest exhibition and conference set for October 3 to 5
at the Aliu Mahama Sports Stadium in Tamale.
The partnership worth $75, 000 in the form
technical and financial assistance to help farmers and agro-processors expand
business opportunities and build new partnerships to foster the growth of
Ghana’s Agriculture sector and generally improve food and nutrition security.
Ms Rukia Yacoub, the WFP Representative and
Country Director, speaking at a media briefing on the partnership said WFP has
participated in some previous Pre-harvest events, where they sponsored hundreds
of farmers to enrol in the purchase for progress initiative.
The Exhibition and Conference is a business
forum and an interventional platform that provides opportunities for various
value chain actors in the agriculture sector to meet and discuss business
contracts as well as work together as a coherent team, whose goal is to ensure
that enough produce is available locally for consumption thereby drastically
She said their participation in the conference
this year was not new, but on a larger scale due to the current focus area of
their support in Ghana.
“For the upcoming event, WFP plan to sponsor
the participation of 200 farmers from the three Northern Regions, Ashanti and
Brong Ahafo Regions,” she added.
She said the 8th Pre-harvest Agribusiness
event would highlight agro-economic opportunities to investors, policy-makers,
business leaders, academic, finance professionals, key government agencies,
input dealers among others.
Ms Yacoub said during the three-day event, the
WFP would lead discussions on the importance and role of supply chain in food
systems and agribusiness, focusing on specialised nutritious foods.
She said they would also lead the discussions
on Sustainable Agricultural Warehousing and Storage, Post-harvest Management
and Food Safety and Quality Standards.
She said smallholder farmers would get the
opportunity to learn about innovations and technologies, participate in
trainings, exhibitions, field demonstrations and market linkages.
The Country Director said WFP looks forward to
working with all stakeholders for the transformation of the agribusiness sector
into a more inclusive, equitable, climate smart and oriented towards the
improvement of lives of rural poor and vulnerable people.
She said in Ghana, their support to government
has always ensured that they keep in step with the National priorities and the
country’s development stage.
She said thanks to the Canada for their
partnership and funding, WFP Ghana has moved from most of the traditional
programmes implemented in other countries.
Ms Yacoub said currently “We are working with
the Ghana Health Service and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture on an
innovative integrated food security and nutrition programme, which has the
private sector at the centre.”
Under the programme, two industrial
agro-processors in Kumasi and Sunyani have been supported to improve on their
factories to enable them produce specialised fortified nutritious foods of
She said these products were being provided
and sold to mothers to help reduce malnutrition; particularly stunting among
Ms Alberta Nana Akyea Akosa, Executive
Director of Agrihouse Foundation, said the 8th edition of the event was
expected to see an even bigger participation as more and more famers, farmer
groups and businesses in the sector have expressed interest in participating.
She said this year’s edition has attracted
many inputs from private sector and international organizations, which would
make it an exciting experience.
“We expect a much larger number of
participating exhibitors and conference attendees this year, judging from the
early signals we are picking up,” she said.
The Executive Director said, “Agribusiness is
the way to go in poverty reduction and national development. “I am elated and
grateful to the various institutions that have seen wisdom in this idea and
have supported it over the years.”
She called on other well-meaning organizations
to come forward to lend their support, so that together they could build a stronger
agriculture sector and a bigger national economy led by agriculture.