Business News of Saturday, 17 August 2019
The West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI), has entered into a partnership with Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture (SFSA), Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) and research institutions across the sub-Saharan Africa to help address issues concerning crop and soil health improvement for agricultural intensification.
Apart from Ghana, this partnership is also towards economic transformation in Nigeria and Burkina Faso.
This project, according to WACCI which is located within the University of Ghana, is aimed at addressing issues related to the food security objectives of the African Union research initiatives, through sustainable crop production intensification and the delivery of research outputs for direct yield improvements on-farm.
“The challenge to be surmounted through this initiative is to empower and support African farmers to increase farm yields of key food security crops,” WACCI said in a statement.
“Farmers will be trained through some participatory approaches such as farmer field schools, value chain workshops and exposed to the use of superior germplasm/improved seeds that are adaptable to the changing climates, tolerant to abiotic stresses with resistance to prevailing pests and diseases.
“The need to empower resource poor farmers across the continent also requires the development of resources necessary for breeding efficiency through effective genetic resource management, pre-breeding, and mapping and introgression of genes of agronomic importance into farmer preferred varieties as well as other supporting activities proposed under this project.
“Tracer studies on prevailing farm yields will be carried out and yields compared with baseline data collected on same farms owned by the same farmers before the farmer field schools and value chains workshops.”