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Harnessing potential of mango: eco.business Fund, Fidelity Bank hold agribusiness-workshop

BY: Graphic Business
Participants in the training

Mangoes are commercially the second-largest tropical fruit grown in the country. Increasing consumer demand both locally and internationally offers significant growth opportunities for the sector and a means to diversify income for local farmers and contribute to their livelihoods.

However, several limitations across the value chain hinder sustainable production and processing.

A few of these include limited access to capital, diseases, increasing production costs, as well as inefficient production methods, high post-harvest losses of up to 30 per cent, and limited access to export markets due to certification constraints.

Climate variability and weather extremes, such as prolonged dry spells or severe flooding caused by the degradation of forest reserves also pose further threats.

Response

To help make the sector more vibrant to overcome the challenges and harness the potential, the development facility of eco.business Fund and Fidelity Bank Ghana hosted a capacity-building workshop for more than 60 stakeholders from across the country’s mango value chain.


It focused on economical and sustainable solutions to current challenges within the Ghanaian mango sector.

The participants included primary producers and processors, exporters and aggregators, as well as agricultural stakeholders such as experts of the Plant Protection and Regulatory Directorate (PPRD), Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), GIRSAL, GAIP and the National Mango Growers Association.

Sustainability

Through a combination of presentations, interactive panel discussions, group work and knowledge-sharing sessions, participants at the workshop addressed the current challenges facing the industry.

They also explored ways to improve the overall sustainability of the entire mango value chain through improved access to finance and markets, as well as capacity building on sustainability certifications such as Global G.A.P. or Fairtrade International.

The two-day workshop was an outcome of the eco.business Fund’s partnership with Fidelity Bank Ghana is primarily aimed at supporting sustainable practices across several agricultural value chains in the country.

The Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the eco.business Fund, Dr Jens Mackensen, said: “Global uncertainty, climate change and rising food insecurity are three major challenges impacting Ghanaian households.

The fund is proud to play an active role in helping to equip Ghanaian agri-businesses with the needed skills to navigate and adapt to a rapidly evolving landscape.

For his part, the Managing Director of Fidelity Bank Ghana, Julian Opuni, said: "After a successful summit for the poultry industry, we are excited to have brought together players in the mango value chain to discuss how we can improve the industry's performance and growth.

“While the mango value chain can boast of steady production and a considerable number of investments from the private sector, a few challenges, such as low exports from the mango sector, remained.”

According to him, it was against this background that Fidelity Bank in partnership with eco.business Fund organised the mango value chain summit to address the challenges and proffer solutions that would set the country on its path to becoming one of the major exporters in the region.

eco.business Fund

The eco.business Fund aims to promote business and consumption practices that contribute to biodiversity conservation to the sustainable use of natural resources, to mitigate climate change and adapt to its impacts in Latin America and the Caribbean, and sub-Saharan Africa.

Fidelity Bank Ghana

In a little over a decade, Fidelity Bank Ghana has grown from a discount house to a Tier-1 bank and is now the largest privately-owned Ghanaian Bank in Ghana. The bank currently serves its approximately two million customers in 75 branches across Ghana and is a leader in the digital banking space.

The bank has two subsidiaries, Fidelity Asia Bank Limited, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary in Malaysia and Fidelity Securities Limited, an asset management firm.