The farmers, dignitaries and facilitators after the launch of the union
The farmers, dignitaries and facilitators after the launch of the union

Central Regional Rice Cooperative Union launched

The Central Regional Rice Cooperative Union has been launched in Cape Coast to effectively galvanise rice farmers and actors in the value chain for increased productivity.

Prior to the launch, 30 leaders of smallholder rice farmer-based organisations (FBOs) and other rice value chain actors had undergone training on effective rice farming, processing and cooperative activities.

The participants who were from five districts including representatives from over 13 rice grower FBOs and other value chain actors from the five beneficiary communities, namely Gomoa East, Assin Fosu, Assin North, Assin South and Twifo Atti-Morkwa, were taken through a three-day training programme.

The launch was part of the KOICA Rice Value Chain Improvement (RVCI) project.

The RVCI project was launched in June 2021 by the government of the Republic of Korea, through the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and its implementing partner, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), to bring rice value chain actors in the region together.

In a speech delivered on her behalf by the Chief Director of the Central Regional Coordinating Council, Kingsley Agyei Boahene, the Central Regional Minister, Justina Marigold Assan, indicated that the union was to ensure the successful launch and sustenance of a local rice brand, the Central Rice on the Ghanaian market.

However, she stated that the union must maintain open lines of communication, active dialogue and exchange of knowledge among members and also recommended that regular training should be organised to ensure they stayed updated with the latest agricultural practices and market trends, to maintain high brand quality on the market.

Mrs Assan urged that as the union progressed, members should ensure that the benefits of the collective efforts would reach every member.

In his remarks, the RVCI Project Manager, Dr Haegon Chung, encouraged the executive of the union to work hard to be an apex body in the near future.

He pledged to work with other stakeholders to provide the needed support in the union to ensure its sustainability.

The Central Regional Director of Agriculture, Dr Peter Omega, for his part, enjoined the executive to adopt modernised techniques and work hard to improve rice production in the region, to make it a renowned hub of high quality rice.

The Interim Chairman of the Central Regional Rice Cooperative Union, Felix Osew, thanked the project management for its facilitating role in training and forming the union and gave an assurance to work hard for its growth.

The Chief Executive Officer of Benda Service Group, the implementing partner of the project, Benjamin Edusah, observed that the impact of the RVCI project had improved the livelihood of farmers and rice value chain actors.

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