DuPont, an international organisation that deals with issues related to agricultural development, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) launched a collaborative programme in Tamale on Wednesday, that will boost maize production among smallholder farmers and help to increase their incomes.

wpid-USAID.jpgThe initiative, which involves an investment of more than US$4 million over the next four years, started in July 2014.

Known as the Ghana Advanced Maize Seed Adoption Program (GAMSAP), the programme is modelled on a similar one undertaken in Ethiopia by ACDI/VOCA, the implementing organization in Ghana.

A release signed by Mrs Joyce Asiedu, Press Attach? at the United States Embassy in Accra, and copied to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on Wednesday, stated that GAMSAP will support the establishment of more than 3,200 demonstrations throughout the country to help enhance the incomes of 43,000 smallholder maize farmers.

It indicated that during the launch of the program in Tamale, Lystra Antoine, DuPont Pioneer?s Global Agriculture Development Director, discussed the challenge of food security in Ghana.

?DuPont is committed to collaboratively tackling global food security challenges and we are honoured to work with USAID to significantly increase productivity for maize farmers in Ghana.

?DuPont is collaborating with USAID to improve household incomes of smallholder maize farmers by improving their access to credit, to hybrid seeds, to better agronomy, to secure input and output markets, to improved post-harvest handling practices, and to market linkages with end users?, said the Director.

According to the release, Ghana currently has an average maize yield of about 1.5 metric tons per hectare, which is significantly below the average 2 tons per hectare of maize yields in Africa and 10 tons per hectare in the U.S. By adopting hybrid seed and using improved farming inputs and techniques, participating farmers will be able to achieve significant productivity gains and increased profitability.

?High quality seed (both local and international) is a key to the modernization and profitability of the agricultural sector. This partnership is designed to demonstrate the benefits of these new varieties and encourage farmers to invest in their businesses with productivity-boosting technologies,? said Jim Bever, the Ghana Mission Director of USAID.

DuPont Pioneer is the world’s leading developer and supplier of advanced plant genetics, providing high-quality seeds to farmers in more than 90 countries. It provides agronomic support and services to help increase farmer productivity and profitability and strives to develop sustainable agricultural systems for people everywhere. .

The company believes that by collaborating with customers, governments, NGOs, and thought leaders we can help find solutions to such global challenges as providing enough healthy food for people everywhere, decreasing dependence on fossil fuels, and protecting life and the environment.



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