USAID trains Agro-input dealers on seed business

Tamale, Agro-input dealers have undergone training on Seed Business Development and Rice Varietal Recognition aimed at equipping them with knowledge to better understand the seed sector to ensure effective marketing.

The five-day training, held in Tamale, was also to sensitise input dealers on better ways of handling and storing seeds as well as developing networks and linkages between them and farmers to promote cultivation of certified rice seeds.

It formed part of the ‘Rice Seed Scaling Project’ being implemented by AfricaRice with funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the participants were selected from the Northern, Upper East, Upper West and Volta regions.

Mr Musa Salifu Taylor, the Deputy Chief of Party of the USAID Agriculture Technology Transfer Project, who spoke during the opening of the training, urged participants to adopt strategies to reach more farmers to acquire and cultivate certified seeds to ensure high yields.

Despite availability of quality certified rice seeds, some farmers continue to plant grains with low yields hence the need for effective marketing by input dealers to enable more farmers to adopt quality seeds for high yields.

Mr Edward Ametepe, the Executive Secretary of Ghana Agricultural Associations Business and Information Centre (GAABIC), spoke about the importance of rice as a staple in the country urging input dealers to establish the right linkages to supply farmers with good quality seeds to ensure high yields.

Mr Ben Kemetse, the Chief Executive Officer of M&B Seeds and Agricultural Services Ghana Limited, who shared his experience on seeds marketing, advised input dealers to cultivate demonstration farms, label their products, and provide extension services to farmers to convince them to adopt quality certified seeds.

Mr Boubakary Cisse, the Seed Expert and Country Coordinator of the USAID-Rice Seed Scaling Project, emphasised the importance of the workshop towards a sustainable rice seed system in the northern part of the country, linking all the actors.

Source: Ghana News Agency