Yara Ghana, through its ‘One Step Forward’ programme, will support rural female farmers with capacity building in agricultural best practices and free fertilisers.
The measure is to support female farmers in rural areas with the right information to apply fertiliser to their farms in ways that increase yield and not destroy the soil structure.
The Marketing Assistant of Yara Ghana, Mr. Kwame Okyere, made the disclosure in an interview during a working visit to Yara’s warehouse and blending unit by selected members of the Development Action Association (DAA), a group of rural smallholder farmers.
The visit was to afford members of the association the opportunity to see at first-hand the processes involved in the production, storage and delivery of fertiliser to farmers.
They were led by the Founder and Executive Director of DAA, Madam Lydia Sasu.
According to Mr. Okyere, apart from the training programmes offered by Yara agronomists to rural smallholder farmers on a regular basis, the company would give out free samples of its YaraMila Actyva fertiliser to female smallholder farmers, together with technical support, for them to apply on their own demonstration plots.
He explained that, the initiative was part of the ‘One Step Forward’ programme to be initiated this farming season.
“Many farmers in sub-Saharan Africa do not know what fertiliser is and do not follow best practice when it comes to optimal crop cultivation. This is due to minimal access to knowledge, misinformation and low quality or counterfeit fertiliser products which have not brought results but on many occasions actually damage the soil and reduce farmer profitability”, he stated.
Mr. Okyere said, being a farmer-centric company, Yara had initiated the ‘One Step Forward’ programme to “focus on transferring agronomic principles and best practices throughout the plant growth cycle”.
He added that, the programme is focused on rural female farmers because of the critical roles they played in families and communities.
Founded in 1997, the DAA is an association of rural female farmers in Ghana that works to reduce poverty by empowering group members to be self-reliant and participate fully in their own development. And it operates in 46 communities.
The Health, Environment, Safety and Quality (HESQ) Manager of Yara Ghana, Mr. Perin Quarshie, took the team through the processes involved in receiving fertiliser products at the port, bagging, transporting to warehouses across the country and final delivery to farmers for application.
The team was also shown around the warehouses where various raw materials for the production of fertiliser were stored.
The members then toured the blending unit used for the production of blends such as the popular Asaase Wura Cocoa Fertiliser.
For her part, Madam Sasu expressed gratitude to Yara Ghana for the opportunity to tour the blending unit and warehouses.
She expressed the hope that, the company would continue to support female farmers in the country and also collaborate with DAA in providing capacity building for its members.