A project to reduce post-harvest losses, increase income and food security among stakeholders in the yam value chain, has commence in Kumasi.
Ms. Joanna Adamson, the Australian High Commissioner, performed the ceremony for the work to begin on Saturday.
The project dubbed: "Improved yam storage for food security and income" is being funded by the Australian government under the AusAID Development Research Awards Scheme (ADRA).
It is expected to assess and promote not only best-practice yam storage systems, but those that meet the needs of local communities and that use locally relevant technologies.
The two-year project is being undertaken jointly by the College of Agriculture and Natural Resource, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Techology (KNUST) and Crops Research Institute (CRI) of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
Ms. Adamson indicated that support for the programme was part of commitment by her country to bolster agricultural development through research, improved techniques and practices to benefit Ghanaian farmers and the people in general.
She said with the global demand for food predicted to increase by 60 per cent by the year 2050, it was essential to address issues of storage, market access and equitable economic benefits for farmers.
The High Commissioner cited how her country was partnering Ghana to train more than 300 extension officers in all the ten regions of the country to build their capacity in contemporary extension delivery methods.
Ms. Adamson stated that there would be a joint supervision by the project team members and professors, as well as experts in Australian universities to allow for effective work.
Professor William Otoo Ellis, Vice-Chancellor of the KNUST, decried the high rate of post-harvest losses associated with the yam sector and, therefore advocated more research to address this challenge.
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