PARTNERS, ACTIVITIES AND PROJECTS
We are working in the tropical countries based on the authorization of the Royal Netherland Chambers of Commerce (KVK), the RA4D Stichting (registered in The Netherlands) has received its Sustainable Business Initiative (SBI) codes: (i) KvK-SBI code 94997 to be eligible for Advocacy Activities and (ii) KvK-SBI code 94995 to be eligible as an umbrella, cooperation and advisory bodies through the establishment of partnerships thru government agencies, private and public companies, universities (local and international) and NGOs (local and international).
We are happy to share our stories, and successes which we have achieved within one year of the establishment of the Netherland RA4D Stichting in April 2019 and the Netherland-Ghana RA4D Foundation in Sep 2019. Furthermore, on 19 Nov 2020, RA4D was registered as a National NGO in Ghana, annually up to date with its registration number, D.S.W./9647.
Our first NGO target was to strengthen our partnerships with whom we could and have already set strong collaborative works from our previous job with CGIAR-CIP in Ghana as our first country in our focus. Both board members of RA4D Stichting, Drs. Erna Abidin and Ted Carey have already worked with and are still living in this country. We successfully registered our NGOs as national NGOs in Malawi in July 2022 and in Nigeria, in August 2022. Both Malawi and Nigeria registration numbers of each can be seen here. Both countries were previously covered by our previous managerial experiences, too.
Meanwhile, we will expand our focus in the next countries, if God is willing. The next country in our plan is Indonesia in South East Asia, where Erna was born and has 12 years of work experience at the beginning of her career, e.g., at the Ministry of Agriculture of Indonesia. In December 2022, she received an Award from IPB University as seen in this link (at 1:19:59 to 1:25:10); the ceremony was in Indonesian language.
OUR STRATEGIC PLANS AND PROGRESS IN 2023
- We registered the Reputed Agric4Dev LBG, a national NGO of Ghana, at NATO followed by the Federal Government of the United States of America. We successfully received our ID (NATO and US Federal Government): Reputed Agriculture 4 Development Foundation LBG / XTXAX6DE2793 / SMHY6 with a yearly period from 13 Sep 2023 to 2024 and it is possible to be renewed on a yearly basis.
- We registered Reputed Agric4Dev Limited (RA4D Limited), the national NGO in Malawi at NATO. We received our NCAGE code: SQFE3 on 15 Sep 2023. Registration at the US Federal Government is in process.
- We registered Reputed Agric4Dev Stichting, the Netherlands NGO as an umbrella NGO international at NATO. We received our NCAGE code: H2Q58 on 17 Sep 2023. Registration at the US Federal Government is in process.
- The registration of our National NGO in Nigeria, Reputed Agriculture for Grassroots Development Foundation at NATO is in process. Later, it will follow to the US Federal Government.
- Approach RVO Netherlands to get opportunities on subsidy programs for our NGO in The Netherlands, Ghana, and Nigeria.
- Approach the UN Development program for our NGO in Malawi.
- Submitted USAID small grant for Northern Ghana program on the value chain and market opportunities for grassroots.
- Updated the Concept Note submitted to AGRA at the end of 2022 for Ghana, Nigeria, and Malawi into three concept notes for each country.
INDIVIDUALLY CREATED PROJECTS THROUGH EXPERTS OF RA4D STICHTING AND FOUNDATION SERVICES IN GHANA
The First Fiscal Year of the period during which our NGO was established (1.5 years): Apr 2019 – Dec 2020
Our first effort was in Ghana. We were pleased to start with our support to establish our collaboration with private sector. There is a need to involve the private sector to strengthen the ability to reach out many more beneficiaries on the ground level. So, the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030 Agendas can be successfully seen by 31 Dec 2030.
(1) April 2019 – Dec 2020. We worked with El-Green Agribusiness Ltd in Ghana. This company showed interests on the sweetpotato commercialisation but they wanted to make money as soon as possible. Our advice was to start with the Sweetpotato nursery from which they can sell vines fast The garden was situated in Agona-Ashanti, Kumasi. This small project is still on-going at least to sustain the 4 staff ‘salaries of El-Green and maintaining the plants at the nurseries.
(2) 2020: Supporting the Volta Integrated Agricultural Development (VIAD) Ltd for sweetpotato value chains (GAPs, Postharvest handling, contacting various potential partners/donors to work with this company meant for their project development.
(3) 2020: Supporting E-Darkey and Associates Ltd for their sweetpotato nursery development and contacting potential partners/donors to help carry out their project development. We have finalized our partnership as this company could sustain themselves for their own pathway. Per 14 Dec 2022, Mr. Emmanuel Darkey, the owner of this company, was also a member of Reputed Agric4Dev LBG (RA4D) in Ghana, has sent a formal request to quit and he would be NO MORE AVAILABLE FOR AND REGISTERED AS a Executive Director for Partnerships of RA4D in Ghana due to being seriously focused on his own company. There are 3 Ghanaians and one Netherland added in our Executive Directors for Ghana (https://reputeda4d.nl/about/).
(4) 2021: Collaboration with SAYEX Ltd and planning to establish a Consortium where RA4D Stichting and Foundation is one of the members.
SMALL FUNDING PROJECTS
ACTIVITIES THROUGH PARTNERSHIPS
WHAT HAVE WE DONE IN FISCAL YEAR OF 2022?
(I) CONTINUATION WITH REMAINING ACTIVITIES OF PROJECTS SUCH AS AGRA OFSP IN GHANA, RTB-TRICOT SCALING, VARIETAL TRIALS FOR BEOTANICS LTD (IRISH COMPANY)
1.1. AGRA OFSP PROJECT IN GHANA (March 2021 to 2022)
- On 16 Feb 2022, the last Multi-stakeholder Meeting was organized by Reputed Agric4Dev LBG in Accra, Ghana. The recording event can be watched here at Youtube.
- Reputed Agric4Dev LBG reported their findings on AGRA project during this Multi-stakeholders meeting as the cover ppt shown in the following picture.
1.2. FINALIZING THE TRICOT SCALING CITIZEN SCIENCE PROJECT IN GHANA.
- Dr. Ted Carey and team presented the results at African Potato Association (APA) 2022 Conference in Malawi through a poster session. A picture of this poster is shown below.
1.3. Repeating the observation on the performances varieties brought from outside of Ghana to help Beotanics company find opportunities of vine sales in Ghana in the rain season of 2022. The varieties could not cope with the harsh environment condition in Ghana and they were completely destroyed by the Sweetpotato Virus Diseases (SPVD) and Sweetpotato weevils (Cylas spp) during plant development period.
II. WINNING AN AWARD OF WRITING THE CASE STUDY FOR SCIENTIFIC WRITING ON THE TOPIC OF SWEETPOTATO BREEDING AND GENDER. THE AWARD WAS GIVEN BY ONE-CGIAR ORGANIZATION IN DEC 2022.
The manuscript is submitted in Aug 2023 to the International peer reviewed journal after being accepted by the ONE-CGIAR committee for reviewing the paper.
WHAT HAVE WE DONE IN FISCAL YEAR OF 2021
IN APRIL 2021:
(1) Signing an MoU with Kofi Annan Foundation (KAF)
On 7 April 2021, an MoU between Kofi Annan Foundation (KAF) and Reputed Agriculture 4 Development Stichting and Foundation was signed. We are involved in AGRA scaling project for OFSP in Ghana. Our NGO is under the group of KAF.
(2) Inception of one-year AGRA Scaling Project in Ghana: “Demand Creation and Impact Scaling Project for OFSP (DeCIS)“
This AGRA project is implemented by 8 members of Consortium:
- Kofi Annan Foundation (KAF)
- Reputed Agriculture 4 Development Stichting – Foundation (RA4D)
- Fresh Logistics Limited
- Veronica Osie-Frimpong Limited
- Dorothy Kani Company Limited (DKCL)
- Crop Research Institute (CSIR-CRI)
- E. Darkey and Associates Company Limited
- Ohumpong Company Limited
Overall Goal of this project: To create demand, stimulate functions and activities of OFSP value chains leading to income, nutrition, and livelihood opportunities for smallholders, SMEs, creating businesses for youth and women
The impact pathway of Scaling Action of this project proposed by Erna Abidin (RA4D) to be brought in her ToS facilitation in Sep 2021:
IN JANUARY 2021:
(1) Establishment of partnership to another new comer of private sector in Ghana, started in January 2021.
This new private sector involvement will work in Northern areas of Ghana. Therefore, we have expected to complete our areas reaching out of all over Ghana by 2021.
The consortium of Ghanaian companies wants to focus in Tolon District, North Ghana. The first approach of which Ted Carey and Erna Abidin was to meet with the Paramount Chief of Tolon District. We are advised to work with two communities, Chirifoyili and Bitingli.
Then, Ted Carey and Erna Abidin met with each community separately but on the same day, in January 2021. They were very happy to meet us again and be involved with our new program but still in the areas of promoting sweetpotato, and also, other crops which are suitably growing in the mild drought-prone areas.
Fortunately, Chirifoyili Community was one of communities in which Erna Abidin has closely worked with this community on a community-base research project on ‘Sand Storage Innovation package of Technologies‘ funded by USAID-OFDA (July 2017 – Sep 2018). Therefore, it makes our work easy with them.
We would like to design a program where this private company consortium could work on ‘agri-pay model’. Based on Erna’s hypothesis, that ‘the sustainability occurs if there is a market being structured for sweetpotato or other agricultural crops of which helping lift up the livelihood of resource-poor farmers’.
It is likely, we have met the correct private sector team. It has met our goals. The team is willing to be partnered and has shown interests on our plan to work closely on the ‘Agri-pay Model’ as a chosen innovation package for the farmers. A successful model is being anticipated because we strengthen the strong and healthy partnerships to manage the project.
As our motto written at our Homepage:
‘WORKING IN SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE FOR DEVELOPMENT IN THE TROPICS‘
Our first focused country is Ghana, West Africa. In this year of 2021, our team, the RA4D NGO, wants to implement our objective that we can bring many more private companies to invest their business in agriculture. In this case, the sweetpotato crop is an ‘entry point’ for us. We expand our effort on the involvement of the public sector, i.e. NARS, MoFA and Extension Department of Agriculture. So that we can really work together on sweetpotato value chains as there has a relatively strong foundation created by a number of CIP projects of which we have been involved in managing them in Ghana and in other countries such as Burkina Faso and Nigeria, West Africa. By establishing a strong partnership between private sector and public sector, we are fostering environmentally friendly, community-based sustained agricultural development.
(2) A continuation of RTB-Scaling on TRICOT Scaling technique in 2021 in Ghana
Working closely with One-CGIAR group through RTB Scaling funding project on Tricot Scaling in 2021 is a big impact toward our NGO performance and growth in the development world.
The first publication in which both of our senior scientists, Dr. Erna Abidin and Dr. Edward (Ted) Carey are among the co-authors on this Tricot Technology. This is an open access publication and it can be read here.
Scaling Action based on Research is on-going process through a number of meetings and consultations together with the Implementing Partners Scaling Champions in Ghana as well as in another selected country such as Rwanda. This scaling action will be implemented in this year of 2021.
(3) There might be a Feasibility Study to be done in Ghana
This will be a one-year pilot project of feasibility study; we work with one of the agric companies from Ireland. I am not sure if a healthy collaboration would be established. There is a challenge, however, we will try our best to work with.
WHAT HAVE WE DONE IN FISCAL YEAR OF 2020
IN JULY 2020: Collaboration with Volta Integrated Agricultural Development (VIAD) through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
Since July 2020, we started to have small incomes for the RA4D NGO in Ghana. We have obtained a supervision-fee from each agricultural development experts out of the RA4D executive directors who can help supervise the private company to establish their business in sweetpotato value chains in Volta Region, Eastern Ghana. This company has also planned to include 1000 out-growers in their sweetpotato activities by 2021. Currently, we managed to hire a professional accountant on a contract basis to help us prepare the financial report based on an international standard through an audited account.
The RA4D Foundation has developed into an NGO which can generate incomes from the supervising fees paid by a Ghanaian local private company, namely VIAD. The fees are paid on the basis of being needed by the company. According to the MoU, it started in July 2020 up to Dec 2021. As being new in the sweetpotato production and value chains, we should not expect too much to get paid every month as being agreed in the MoU. We also accepted a small amount of fees. At least we need to reach our expectations: (i) meeting our mission to have an established private company in the sweetpotato (OFSP) value-chains and we could see its impacts in Ghana as our first working area. (ii) established an ‘outgrowers’ model from VIAD of which this company has planned to have 1,000 resource-poor farmers by 2021. These out-growers could be seen their improved lives in the next coupled years.
IN JULY 2020: Collaboration with CSIR-Crop Research Institute (CSIR-CRI) through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
Closely working with government agency, such as National Agricultural Research (NARS) is a key element to achieve the successes. We have maintained our contact with them through a partnership from which we have strongly established in the past.
IN NOVEMBER 2020: Collaboration with CIP thru an MoU, of managing a TRICOT Project in Ghana, a CGIAR-RTB Scaling Funding
In Nov and Dec): RA4D helped CIP finalise the first year project because CIP is officially closed the office by 31 October 2020. This project through CGIAR-CIP and CGIAR-Bioversity.
We are honoured by the International Potato Center (CIP) to carry out the Tricot trials for the months of Nov to Dec 2020. CIP administratively requested us to manage the remaining activities of 2020 and keeping a continuation of the 3 technical staff and a driver being employed through our NGO management. We will do our best to continue managing this project in the second year, throughout 2021.
WHAT HAVE WE DONE IN THE FIRST-HALF FISCAL YEAR OF 2019
Shortly after establishing our NGO in The Netherlands in 2019, some collaborations have been initiated in Ghana and Indonesia.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with YAMPI (Yayasan Amal Masyarakat Pertanian Indonesia; in English: ‘The Indonesian Agricultural Society Charity Foundation – IASCF)’. Followed by a number of visits to Indonesia, for such as lobbying, e.g., meetings and approaches to seek any opportunities for a collaboration.
Among others, we received a positive response from the Agency for Agricultural Research and Development, Ministry of Agricultural of Indonesia. It is absolutely as one of the results of our effort to establish a good collaboration between RA4D Stichting and Indonesian Research for Development Agencies (Badan Litbangtan di Indonesia). However, since we are still in a process of making a progress to expand our work in the new working areas for our NGO, we need to get funding projects to jumpstart the work to be smoothly. In this way, it will help this partnership model to obtain a meaningful result aimed at accomplishing the sustainability. Then, in 2020, the Covid-19 outbreak has also distracted our movement. We cannot show our progress of working in Indonesia in this web-page. A progress, however, can be read in our narrative report provided in this RA4D website.
Effort on this valuable collaboration has been fired up through Erna Abidin’s first Alma Mater, IPB University. Recently, this university has organised a ‘Talk Show’ with their alumni to celebrate the 57th of years IPB University Anniversary in September 2020. Erna Abidin, the CEO/Founder of RA4D Stichting and Foundation was one of the lucky alumni to be chosen for this year. She was asked to share her experiences while working in Africa while people have a general perception in a different way of what she had from her experiences living and working in this African continent for about 20 years. Indeed, the talk was in Indonesian language. However, the two news might be able to be translated into English.
The next paragraph shows the RA4D Stichting (based on KvK-SBI codes 94997 & 94995) outcomes in which we accomplished our target to reach mission on (i) bringing a private company in Ghana to be interested in sweetpotato quality declared planting material (QDPM) business; (ii) changing the undeveloped plots in the forest zone into a useful agricultural area. Smart agriculture approach and minimum tillage practices were introduced to this private company as well. The plots can be used as demo-plots for local extension, women and youth. This type of sweetpotato vine multiplication management can be easily adopted by women and youth to start with their business on vine sales. It can also be easily set this vine multiplication management at the out-growers + nucleus model.
Nevertheless, our voluntary work of supervising the El-Green Agro Business Ltd has shown a successful effort. Because they could sell the OFSP vines several times to other private companies or medium level of growers/entrepreneurs in Ghana. The clean and true to types of sweetpotato vines can be bought from their garden in Egona Kumasi-Ashanti Region.
EL-GREEN AGRO BUSINESS LTD
Since June 2019, Reputed A4D (in line with our mission and vision) has been supporting and supervising the private sector company, El-Green Agro Business Ltd. to develop a commercial sweetpotato planting material (seed) business. This company produces good quality seed for Ghanaian farmers. Reputed A4D is helping El-Green to apply the sweetpotato seed systems approach introduced by CIP and partners under the Jumpstarting OFSP in West Africa (2014-2017).
An undeveloped plot in the forest zone at Afamanso near Agona near Kumasi, was chosen by El-Green Agro Business Ltd as the location for their seed nursery.
THE REPUTED A4D – EL-GREEN AGRO BUSINESS PARTNERSHIP
ACTIVITIES AT THE FARM IN AFAMANSO NEAR AGONA ASHANTI, NEAR KUMASI
EL-GREEN ACTIVITIES IN 2019 (Mid-year to Dec 2019)
Commercial sweetpotato multiplication for vine production began in September 2019. Coincidentally this was at the end of the rainy season in the Ashanti Region of Ghana, but there was demand for vines. Soil moisture was still adequate to cultivate the crop, and plots could also be watered with watering cans. Advising on setting up the beds for rapid multiplication, sourcing the vines, and planting the cuttings was the first activity of Reputed A4D to engage with a private sector partner, to set up their sweetpotato seed business.
EL-GREEN ACTIVITIES IN 2020
Afamanso lies in the Forest agroecological zone of Ghana, and has a weakly bimodal rainy season with rains expected from March through October (peaks in June and September). This is in contrast to the northern Savannah agroecologies, which have a uni-modal rainfall pattern (peak rainfall in June to August) and a long dry season from October through March. Annual cropping is highly related to rainfall patterns in this region where irrigation is not widespread. A general crop calendar for West Africa (FEWS NET, 2018) shows the different patterns for the northern and southern agroecologies.
The annual dry dry season was pronounced during early 2020, with a strong harmattan extending for weeks into the south of the country. Climate change is bringing increasing uncertainty to the already uncertain lives of farmers dependent on rain-fed agriculture in Ghana.
Irrigation is essential for dry season production of planting material so that it can be ready when peak demand occurs at the beginning of the rainy season. On the advice of Reputed A4D, El-Green Agro Business installed irrigation at the Afamanso farm. Installation took place in March 2020, and was key to the rapid growth of healthy vines, both in the field and the screen house.
The paragraphs below describe the photos above.
Beds of healthy vines of CRI-Apomuden grown from “apparently healthy” planting material sourced from an experienced vine multiplier, Mr. Dauda Zakaria, in the Northern Region of Ghana in 2019 (photo with fence showing above). The sweetpotato plants at El-Green were inspected by the Regional MoFA PPRSD officer a month after planting. In Dec 2019, the first sale of vines of CRI-Apomuden OFSP, to plant 4 acres was made to a producer / processor in the Central Region.
Early in 2020, during the dry season, El-Green harvested the vines from the 2019 plots and replanted them in new beds (photo to the right of the first photo above). On 12 April 2020, those vines were used to plant more new beds in addition to the plants purchased twice from Dauda Zakaria in the first quarter of the year 2020. Dr. Ted Carey (next photo to the right) is pictured in front of the newly-planted Apomuden.
On 6 May 2020, Alhassan Issufu took a photo (next photo to the right) of the same plots. Unbelievable! The excellent growth and development are seen from the CRI-Apomuden OFSP plants from the field. The plants are all fine and look healthy, too. They will be ready in the first week of June. It is estimated to cover 12 acres of land for root production.
The last photo with Ayisha standing between two sweetpotato beds is showing plots sourced from the second harvest of CRI-Apomuden OFSP bought in 2019. These plants are absolutely ready for vine harvest. Vine lifting or Earthing-up method for mature stems is recommended to avoid damage to vines during harvest. In this way, good quality vines can be maintained, and maximum productivity and profits assured for vine producers supplying good quality vines to customers. On 9 May 2020, vines sufficient to plant five acres were sold from these plots to root producers. In addition to the amount sold on the above-date, the vines from these plots have been already sold twice, to cover the land of 1 and 2 acres for sweetpotato root production.
Seeing a fast growing private company, El-Green Agro-Business Ltd on an appropriate sweetpotato seed business in Ghana, our team, Reputed Agriculture 4 Development Stichting & Foundation Ltd, has shown its high appreciation of their seriousness on this seed commercialisation. Therefore, we would like to share on this success effort through this website. Only in one year of efforts, throughout 3 July 2020 as the results of consistent supervision, followed by monitoring and evaluation by our professional team in Ghana, this private company could sell the OFSP planting materials covering a total of 23 acres of land cultivated by OFSP crop for the purpose of root production. This has reached three regions of Ghana, i.e. Ashanti, Central, and Bono East Regions. We began from the ‘Square-One’ of situation and condition. During the CIP led project Jumpstarting OFSP in West Africa through Diversified Markets, the regions mentioned above, have never been reached for the sweetpotato vine sales.
It is clearly an indication that a scaling effort can happen by the involvement of private sector; these are the people who have a strong economic background and they can help bring the country to achieve its sustainable development goals (SDGs). There is a continuing need for research guidance to ensure the success of such effort.
The CRI-Apomuden OFSP variety from the apparently clean planting material bought in 2019 was from a trained vine multiplier in North Region Ghana. CRI-Apomuden can produce fresh, healthy vines up to the 4th harvest or beyond as long as you take care of the Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) during cultivating it.
Reputed Agric4Dev introduced GAPs, use of irrigation for dry-season planting, post-harvest handling techniques and marketing strategies to help El-Green Agro Business establish a vine commercialisation of sweetpotato in Ghana. After one year of intensive supervision, this private company has already found its ‘path and roadmap’ towards a success of reaching its impact-pathway on sweetpotato vines for commercialisation.
This public-social effort is part of our Services as a non-profit NGO to stimulate private sector partners to excel in contributing to the development of a viable sweetpotato industry in Ghana. GAPs, smart agricultural approach and irrigation are essential to produce good quality vines even when the sweetpotato crop was planted during the dry season. From healthy vines farmers can expect high yields of sweetpotato.
G-Zero Nuclear Mother Plants in the Screen-house at El-Green Agro Business Ltd, in Afamanso, Ashanti Region, Ghana
The purpose of the screenhouse is to hold and multiply nuclear pathogen-tested “G0; Generation-zero” as nuclear mother plants of sweetpotato varieties obtained from CSIR-Crop Research Institute (CRI), Ghana (see photos below). The pathogen-tested Apomuden variety as nuclear mother plants will serve as the source of planting materials for all outside field multiplication, rapidly converting production in the nursery from apparently healthy material obtained from another multiplier, to exclusive use of the high quality seed source obtained from the public sector breeding and seed program at CSIR-CRI. It is expected that growers will come back to El-Green Agro Business Ltd., after one or two crop cycles of production (G2) according to the recommended practices for seed commercialisation.
G-Zero pathogen-free tested plants in the Open Field for Sales
Out of 160 initial pots of G0 (referred to the pictures in the Screen House above), 495 vine cuttings could be harvested. 465 vine cuttings then were cultivated in the 165 pots of each having 3 vine cutting. The remaining 300 G-0 vine cuttings were planted in the open field on 7 May 2020. More nuclear mother plants could be harvested as the sweetpotatoes were vigorously growing; this is absolutely because the plants have received good cares by a dedicated technical staff in the field. Then, the standard plot of 20 x 1 m in size having a capacity of 1,000 plants could be filled up shortly.
The ‘manure-tea’ was given to the crop as being requested by El-Green Agro-Business Ltd. They want to keep the sweetpotato planting material being organically cultivated. In the following photo, it has shown a healthy and vigorous G-0 nursery cultivated in the ‘Open Field’. Picture was taken on 22 June 2020, ~1.5 MAP (planting date was on 7 May 2020; credit Alhassan). On this very date of 22 June 2020, the G-0 Apomuden from Nuclear mother plants with an additional vine cuttings from the G-0 Open Field were harvested and planted. We aimed to expand more areas (referred to the last photo in the slide as seen as an overview of the garden). Thus, the planting materials from G-0 are ready for sales in a big quantity as being planned. In this way, a field replacement from the ‘apparently clean planting material’ of Apomuden to pathogen-tested Apomuden variety is strategically done.
Good News for RA4D Stichting and Foundation Ltd. The El-Green Agrobusiness Ltd has found the steps on a correct roadmap to reach its impact-pathway of a change to obtain the successes in achieving their mission: ‘developing sweetpotato value chain in their businesses’. It is seemly that the company has begun to stand by its own team and developed capacities. Throughout the vine sales in 2020, a total of 32 acres of land were covered by the OFSP clean planting materials of which farmers/growers bought from the El-Green Agro-business. According to the reports from several buyers, the vines were good and healthy, no varietal mixture was found when they grew them in the field.
The founder of Nutripride Ltd is Mr. Yutaro (Ryan) Oka based in Canada. The organisation currently focusses on school meals in a number of countries in SSA. Currently, they have planned to start in Ghana as Mr. Yutaro Oka had his last posted job at UN-World Food Program (UN-WFP) in Tamale, Northern Region of Ghana. The UN-WFP has strongly supported the school feeding programs. One of them, for instance in Ghana, the organisation has created markets for resource-poor producers for a ready market to feed our young promising leaderships started at the national primary schools.
Historical background of our collaboration
While Dr. Erna Abidin was leading the 3 year proof-of-concept CIP-led project ‘Jumpstarting (JS) OFSP in West Africa through Diversified Markets’ funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), the JS project had tried to seek an opportunity to establish a collaboration with UN-WFP with the aim to introduce the OFSP in the school meals and possibly creating markets for vine and root producers. The sweetpotato leaves, besides having its function as ‘seed’ (read as planting material), the leaves also have a high nutritional value.
Good strategic approach to the ‘Right Leaders in the Right Time’
Through the mission of the Jumpstarting OFSP project, we have managed to smoothly touch the hearts of world leaders to be interested in promoting OFSP crop to be used as for food and nutrition security in Ghana, within the UN-family, and else where. At the end of the following video recorded by ACDEP NGO in Tamale, HE Dr. Kofi Annan has given his message during the press-conference in Tamale, NR in Aug 2015.
The testimony of Mrs. Nane Annan on knowing more about the beauty OFSP variety for health benefits in Ghana
Mrs. Nane Annan confidently told audience at CIP-HQ in Lima, Peru that she got to know and learn about OFSP through Ted Carey and Erna Abidin of CIP based in Ghana. Currently, these are the people who are as the engine of the Reputed Agriculture 4 Development Stichting and Foundation Limited.
Ted Carey and Erna Abidin have introduced the candidate variety ‘Nangungugungu’ (to be released by CSIR-SARI at that moment) to Mrs. Nane Annan in Accra. She, then, has cultivated this variety in her residential garden in Accra as she wanted to learn more about this crop by herself.
In July 2016, a couple of weeks before our big event of HE Kofi Annan and Mrs. Nane Annan visited in Abor, Volta Region, Ghana, Mrs. Nane Annan invited Ted and Erna to come to her house in Accra. She was happy to show her OFSP variety received from us, to be evaluated together.
By that time, I had my chance to politely ask a permission from Mrs. Nane Annan if she allowed us to use her name for naming the OFSP candidate variety to be released, ‘Nangungugungu’ after her name. It was as our great honour towards her tremendous effort in promoting the OFSP variety to the eyes of the world leaders. We were so happy that she has apparently accepted my request with her strong suggestion on its spell as “Nan” but NOT as “Nane”. The Variety Released Committee of Ghana has accepted the name of the newly released variety as CSIR-SARI ‘Nan’ OFSP. Wonderful ….
Collaboration with WFP-ENVAC
Dr. Abebe from UN-WFP has informed us during a special meeting between CIP project leader and UN-WFP leaders in Tamale that his office would take OFSP into among the important crops at UN-SDGPs. Therefore, WFP-ENVAC project through the NR local government has included the OFSP crop among other crops in the nutrition intervention.
Apparently, a collaboration was established between the 15-month CIP-led project for scaling, ‘Extending Orange-fleshed Sweetpotato Availability for Vulnerable Households through Good Agricultural Practices and Post-Harvest Storage’ funded by USAID-OFDA and the WFP-ENVAC project in Tamale, Northern Region of Ghana.
Hon. Minister for Local Government of NR Ghana shows interest on the inclusion of OFSP in the school meals at School Feeding Program
Left: Dr. Erna Abidin, Project Leader for Extending OFSP available for Vulnerable Households funded by USAID-OFDA explaining the Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials and the already availability of OFSP roots in Ghana to UN-WFP Country Leader and Hon. Minister of Local Government for NR Ghana. The Hon. Minister commented and asked the UN-WFP to pay a high attention that there is a need to include the OFSP roots into the diets of school meals.
Right: Group photo was taken during the UN Anniversary Celebration in Oct 2017 in Tamale, NR Ghana. All important stakeholders were invited and have celebrated this anniversary with a successful program.
MAPHLIX TRUST GHANA LIMITED
Address and Information:
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: www.maphlixtrust.com
- Tel: +233 268122590/+233 302424984
Mr. Felix M. Kamassah, is the President of Vegetable Exporters and Producers’ Association of Ghana (VEPAG) and Managing Director and Board Member of Maphlix Trust Ghana Limited.
Maphlix Trust Farm is situated in Volta Region. Our NGO, RA4D Foundation has started to our collaboration starting providing our technical advices as part of services on sweetpotato production and value chains to produce quality roots and vines. We began in this year (2020). We plan to bind this collaboration through various project proposals which giving much better results as we are expecting.
As part of our NGO mission, the RA4D team is so happy that we could bring more private companies to be in the sweetpotato business in Ghana. In this way, we will be optimistic that we will accomplish our mission and vision by involving the private sector in the partnership model, we could fulfil the objectives of UN-SDGs, reaching much more people at the ground level and participating in reducing the hidden hunger elsewhere, improving nutrition and increasing wealth for resource-poor people and medium-high level of societies in Ghana, particularly during the Covid-19 outbreak.
Drs.Ted Carey and Erna Abidin (RA4D Executive Directors) visited to the Maphlix Trust Farm several times. The Farm has wonderful fields. We share with the readers.
Sweetpotato production from Maphlix Farm as seen below (credit: Felix M. Kamassah)