SARI scientists prove efficacy of improved seeds

SeedsResearch Scientist at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research – Savannah Agricultural Research Institute (CSIR- SARI) at the weekend demonstrated to two farmer groups the need to use certified seeds.

This was done by comparing the harvested yield of two maize variety seeds, one belonging to the farmers, and the other for the researchers.

At the end, the farmers’ seeds yielded 18 kilograms, while that of the researchers yielded 40 kilograms.

Some of the farmers who spoke to the Ghana News Agency during the farmers’ field day at a demonstration farm at Wungu in the West Mamprusi District, said they were fully convinced that the right seeds to use were the researchers,’  and gave the assurance that they will use certified seeds in the next farming season.

Mr Ibrahim Tanko, a farmer from Wungu said, “We often prefer to use our own seeds, because it is cheaper, but I have seen that it pays to use the certified seeds.”

Mr Mohammed Haruna, a Plant Breeder at SARI-CSIR, told the GNA said the exhibition sought to reinforce the series of workshops held to educate farmers on the need to adopt best practices, and to use certified seeds to improve yield.

He explained that the demonstration formed part of an Australian funded project, the Sustainable Intensification of Integrated Crop-Sheep and Goats Livestock Systems (SIICSGLS), which was being jointly implemented by the Crop Research Institute, the Animal Research Institute, and SARI.

Mr Haruna said the project priority areas include innovative methods using value chain approach, improved labour productivity, multi-purpose fodder production, enhanced adoption of genetic materials, market development, product development, linking indigenous and scientific knowledge and capacity building along the value chain.

He said SIICSGLS focused on bridging the disparity gap by encouraging more women to engage in Agriculture, to support their families, and to also  find novelty solutions to enable farmers to adapt to climate change.

“To this end we have started developing extra early and early seeds varieties that can withstand the extreme high temperature,” he said.

Dr James Kombiok, Deputy Director of CSIR – SARI, called on farmers to stick to the practical and theoretical training, to increase yield and improve their living standards.

He advised them to always use certified seeds as demonstrated, adding, “You cannot get a good yield if you only rely on best practices, and refuse to use the right seeds.”

Mr Leonard Yosangfo, West Mamprusi District Director of Agriculture, encouraged the farmers to share the knowledge acquired, with others to boost productivity in the district.

Source: GNA

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