Home Business Agriculture CSIR-SARI Engages Policymakers to Strengthen the Rice Value Chain

CSIR-SARI Engages Policymakers to Strengthen the Rice Value Chain

Economics Csir Sari Rice
Participants at the event in Tamale

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research-Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (CSIR-SARI) has engaged policy makers in the rice value chain on seed development and the roadmap to attaining self-sufficiency in the rice industry in the country.

The engagement was to solicit the views of stakeholders on seed production and initiatives that could boost rice production in the country to help halt the importation of rice.

It took place in Tamale and was attended by staff members of selected seed producing companies all over the country.

It is a component of the second phase of the Technology for African Agriculture Transformation (TAAT II) project, which is an initiative of Africa Rice with support from the Africa Development Bank.

It is implemented in Ghana by CSIR-SARI and in eight other African countries.

Mr Issah Sugri, Deputy Director of CSIR-SARI, speaking during the event, said it was necessary to identify a clear roadmap to attaining self-sufficiency in rice production in the country.

He said the country needed enabling government policies from production, post-harvest to marketing stages, and production technologies to provide enough rice.

He said there were adequate agronomic technologies and improved varieties of rice seeds, which when utilised, could yield enough to feed the country, adding post-harvest losses hindered progress in the sector.

He said, “If we are able to address particularly the processing of rice after harvest, we will reduce a lot of the post-harvest losses.”

Mr Sugri urged stakeholders in the rice value chain to improve the quality of locally processed rice, saying enhanced quality would attract the interest of Ghanaian market and beyond.

Mr Alex Yeboah, Acting Head of the Rice Improvement Programme at CSIR-SARI and Focal Person for TAAT II, said the project was about upscaling improved technologies, which were developed by research institutions, among which were seed improvement and other strategies that could increase yield.

He said aside the stakeholder engagement, research institutions were empowered in producing basic and early generation seeds under the TAAT II project.

He said the project was keen about supporting key actors in the rice value chain to build their capacity to enable them to develop a roadmap peculiar to the quality and quantity of rice produced in the country.

He said research had shown that rice production in Ghana was rain fed and encouraged irrigation farming of the product for improved harvest.

Nana Adjei Ayeh II, President of the Ghana Rice Inter-professional Body, said there was lack of targeted policy to stop the importation of rice, adding the private sector was not well resourced to adequately produce rice.

He asked the government to invest in the private sector to enhance their activities in rice production to ensure food security.

He said Ghana had skilled and committed farmers, and expressed optimism that they could produce enough quantity of rice for the country and for export if given the required support.

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