Australia provides $1.3m to improve agriculture in Ghana, other African countries
The Australian government, through the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), has provided $1.3 million to improve agricultural growth and economic development in Africa.
The move is to support six projects to be implemented in Ghana, Cameroon, Mali and Burkina Faso from the Australian Agency of International Development (AusAID) under the Food Security and Rural Development Initiative aimed at achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Dr Ernest Assah, Executive Director of West and Central Africa Council for Agricultural Research and Development (WECARD) made this known on Monday when he opened a three-day Annual Review and Planning workshop for Seed System Improvement in Accra under the theme: ‘Strengthening Seed System in West and Central Africa’.
The meeting was organized by WECARD in collaboration with Australia and Ghana, Burkina Faso, Senegal and Cameroon.
The three-year project focuses on ways and means of establishing efficient, sustainable seed systems for the major staple crops using sorghum, millet, maize, cowpea and groundnut that provide farmers a reliable supply and a range of choices of quality seed, well adapted to local conditions.
The project will use a multi-institutional, multi-scale and inter-disciplinary approach in close partnership with farmers, government and no- governmental organisations, scientists and other stakeholders applying innovation systems to understand and address the major constraints to sustainable seed and input systems in West and Central Africa.
Mr Assah said the projects included unlocking the opportunities to enhance sustained seed systems of staple crops to improve food security and agricultural production in West and Central Africa and an integrated cereal livestock tree system for sustainable land use and improve livelihoods of small-holder farmers.
The objective s of the project is to provide modelling tools for making informed decisions in input use options in improving crop productivity.