Yara Ghana has instituted a programme called ‘One Step Forward’ to build the capacity of rural women farmers in agricultural best practices and free sample fertilizers.
As part of the initiative, the company hosted some selected members of the Development Action Association (DAA), a rural small holder farmers, at its Blending Unit and warehouses in Tema to afford the farmers the opportunity to observe at first-hand processes involved in the production, storage and delivery of fertilizers to farmers.
The farmers were led by the Founder and Executive Director of the DAA, Lydia Sasu.
Kwame Okyere, Marketing Assistant of Yara Ghana, said that apart from the training programmes offered by Yara agronomists to farmers on regular basis, the company will be giving out free samples of its Yara Mila Actyva fertilizer to women smallholder farmers, in addition to technical support.
“Currently, many farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa do not know what fertilizer 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 fertilizer products which have not brought results, and have in many cases, actually damaged the soil and reduced farmer profitability,” he stated.
“Yara, being a farmer-centric company, has initiated the ‘One Step Forward’ Programme to focus on transferring agronomic principles and best practices throughout the growth cycle,ˮ he added.
He further stated that “the One Step Forward programme focuses on rural women farmers because of the critical roles they play in the family and community.”
The DAA team was briefed by a Manager of Yara Ghana, Perin Quarshie on the various processes involved in receiving products at the port, bagging process, transportation to the various warehouses across the country and final delivery to the farmers for application.
They were also conducted round the warehouses where various raw materials for the production of fertilizer products were stored. They then toured the blending unit used for the production of the popular Asaase Wura Cocoa fertilizer.
Some members of the group expressed their happiness at the opportunity to tour the Yara facility.
“It has really opened my eyes, and I now know the processes that the fertilizers we use go through before reaching us,ˮ said Rebecca Manortey, a member of the DAA.
According to her, “I used to think it was a very simple process but now I know better and I think the price of fertilizer is even low considering the work that goes into producing them,ˮ she added.
Madam Lydia Sasu expressed gratitude to Yara Ghana for the opportunity given them to tour the Yara Blending Unit and warehouses.
She expressed the hope that Yara Ghana will continue to support women farmers in Ghana, as well as collaborate with the organization in building the capacity of its members.
Founded in 1997, the DAA is an association of rural women farmers in Ghana that works to reduce poverty by empowering group members to be self-reliant and develop themselves.
DAA operates in 46 communities, with 98% of the beneficiaries being women.