Yara is committing up to US$20million this year to supply free fertiliser to farmers in Ghana as part of intentions to secure access to low-cost, high quality crop nutrition solutions that help strengthen the country’s national food security agenda. Working alongside smallholder farmers and partners, the project seeks to deliver lasting positive impacts to farmers nationwide.
Speaking at the launch of the project in Tema, Managing Director of Yara Ghana, Danquah Addo-Yobo, said the initiative is expected to reach over 100,000 smallholder farmers, and will support production of over 500,000 tonnes of cereals in the country.
“The COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine has compromised access to affordable fertiliser everywhere, hindering farmers’ ability to feed their communities, and threatening food security across the world. It is due to this reasons that Yara is assisting farmers in this project,” he said.
With the Grow Ghana Initiative, farmers will be provided with free bags of YaraMila Actyva fertiliser in a package, effectively reducing smallholder farmers’ fertiliser cost per acre by at least 33.3 percent.
As part of the package, 18,000 metric tonnes, equivalent of 360,000 of 50kg bags, of YaraMila Actyva will be available in free bags at all Yara distribution points for farmers free of charge. This quantity, according to Yara, is to ensure that smallholders have access to enough inputs to sustain cultivation across the country for the rest of the year.
This intervention will be monitored, and its success measured using credible impact evaluation mechanisms with installation and deployment of digital tools, Mr. Addo-Yobo said, adding: “There is a market system approach that will support at least 115 retailers and distributors.”
Part of the project’s component include demonstration fields and farmer trainings to train farmers on fertiliser application and best farming practices.
Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, expressed excitement, and commended Yara Ghana for the intervention which he described as timely.
He said Yara has been an active partner to the gains and successes of government’s flagship ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’ programme. “It is refreshing that despite the global challenges, Yara is committing this significant investment free of charge to farmers in Ghana. Government and MoFA really appreciate the Grow Ghana Initiative,” Dr. Akoto said.
Key partners for the initiative are the African Fertiliser Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP) – an implementing partner, USAID and AGRA.