In partnership with OCP Foundation, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), which oversees agricultural development in Ghana, has launched a project to develop a soil fertility map to address the challenges of food security and cultivated land preservation in Ghana.
A release by them and copied to News Ghana indicated that, “With the support of Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P) and OCP Foundation, more than 130 MoFA agronomists will be trained in different subjects over three years in Ghana and Morocco.
OCP Foundation has provided MoFA with the necessary equipment for the project, namely the materials for setting up two laboratories specialized in soils and fertilizers quality analysis , as well as a new mobile laboratory and a soil sampling kit.
More than 100,000 hectares of soil will be analyzed and mapped in a pilot area in the Ashanti Region.
The official launch ceremony of the soil fertility map project took place today 11th December, 2019, in Accra with the presence of Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Minister of Food and Agriculture, Her Excellency Ms. Imane Ouaadil, Moroccan Ambassador to Ghana, senior Ghanaian officials, and Ghanaian farmers associations, as well as representatives of the national private sector and the fertilizer industry.
Launched by MoFA with the support of OCP Foundation, the project focuses on three main areas: capacity building for MoFA staff, providing laboratories equipment, and developing the soil fertility map.
Through this project that aims to provide Ghanaian farmers with soil analysis tools, OCP Foundation is helping improve local crop yields and strengthen the scientific and technical skills of beneficiaries.
More than 100,000 hectares of soil will be analyzed and mapped in the pilot area, the Ashanti Region; A substantial achievement thanks to both partners.
As part of this project, OCP Foundation will also provide MoFA with the necessary equipment for its two specialized soil and fertilizer analysis laboratories, as well as a mobile soil analysis unit and pick-up trucks and motorcycles to reach the least accessible areas for soil sampling.
The soil fertility map project includes a training component. In total, UM6P experts will train more than 130 MoFA agronomists, engineers, laboratory technicians, and managers.
The training modules will focus on Soil fertility and crop fertilization, geographic information systems (GIS) applied to soil mapping, and fertilizer quality control.
Through this initiative, OCP Foundation remains committed to furthering the emergence of sustainable and resilient agriculture in Africa. Through its various actions on the African continent, OCP Foundation promotes the creation of strategic decision-making tools for agricultural policies.
At the continental level, OCP Foundation produces fertility maps in collaboration with its African partners. To date, more than one million hectares of land have been mapped, more than 240 staff members have been trained, and 14 laboratories have been upgraded.”