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Rice value chain/Ghana - Ghana meets 56 percent demand in local rice production

19 October 2015

According to Ghana’s Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture in charge of Crops, current statistics pointed to the fact that the country met 56 percent of demand for rice production. The deputy minister advocated that intensification efforts to reach 100 percent was necessary to eliminate rice importation. This was disclosed at by the minister at the National Rice Development Strategy (NRSD) validation workshop which has the objective of doubling rice production by 2018. The NRDS was formulated in 2009 and revised in 2015 by the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), in collaboration with the Coalition for African Rice Development (CARD). Ghanaian government has set out strategic intervention areas which when addressed, will lead to the government achieving its mission of increasing rice production by 20 per cent per annum, by 2018. The strategy is also aimed at addressing the challenges of low agriculture production, by focusing on some of the bottlenecks along the rice value chain which hitherto has inhibited the growth of the rice industry. Some thematic areas to be critically looked at includes seed system, fertilizer marketing and distribution system. The rest are harvesting access and maintenance system research and technology dissemination, community mobilization, farmer-based organization and credit management system, as well as monitoring and evaluation. For effective and comprehensive implementation of the strategy and its proposed interventions, it had become necessary to revise the documents to include emerging issues facing the sector, so it would be an organic document, stated the minister. Since it was launched, it has been the guiding document for rice development in Ghana, as many areas identified in the strategy document were being applied by some stakeholders in their operations. A number of interventions have been designed, focused on areas which include rice sector support project with emphasis on the development of water harvesting and regulatory structure and rice seed scaling projects. Other interventions are West Africa seed program, Enhanced Access to quality rice seed initiative, preparation of the rice seed road map, inland valley rice development project and the Nerica Rice Dissemination project. The deputy minister, however, noted that the interventions were not fully addressing the issues, and expressed the hope that other partners would provide technical and financial support to pipeline proposals that came out from other thematic areas in the strategy document. Meanwhile, Ghana’s rice seed road map is being finalized for approval which will strengthen both horizontal and vertical linkages of rice value chain.



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