AGRA in Ghana
The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) is working to
increase the productivity, profitability and sustainability of these small
farms by driving comprehensive change across the agricultural value chain.
AGRA works closely with the government, which allocates at least 10 percent of the national budget to agriculture. Government initiatives and private investments have already enabled the sector to reach a 6 percent annual growth rate. Both achievements meet benchmarks set by Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), an initiative of the African Union's New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD).
In Ghana, AGRA's public- and private-sector partners include the Ministry of Food and Agriculture; the Environmental Protection Agency of Ghana; NEPAD, the Millennium Development Authority (MiDA), Ghana; Standard Bank; the International Center for Soil Fertility and Agricultural Development (IFDC); the University of Ghana, Legon; the West Africa Seed Alliance; and many others.
AGRA believes that Ghana has the potential to transform its smallholder farming into a commercially viable and sustainable enterprise. To accomplish this, AGRA is focusing on strengthening smallholder agriculture in the country's potential "breadbaskets." For example, in the northern region, farmers grow 66 percent of the country's rice. Yet the north is also the poorest region, with nearly two-thirds of the population living in poverty, and lowland rice now yields only 0.5 tons/ha. But through strong partnerships and strategic planning that brings improved seeds, and soil and water management to farmers, yields could be increased to at least three tons/ha. This would transform Ghana into an exporter of rice, and free up US$500 million now spent on rice imports