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Extension officers pledge to support WRS project

BY: Graphic.com.gh

Agricultural Extension Officers in the Upper West Region have pledged to support the Ghana Warehouse Receipt System (WRS) project of the IFC World Bank Group.

The Extension Officers who described the WRS project as one of the best initiatives to address post-harvest losses in the region also indicated their commitment to adopt and integrate WRS initiatives into their outreach activities.

The Extension Officers at the end of a training workshop observed that the skills acquired from the workshop will enable them to support farmers to address key issues relating to post harvest losses in the Upper West Region.

The Regional Women in Agriculture Officer, Madam Barekisu Django Alhassan, said the training has helped her to understand how her outfit can support farmers to reduce post-harvest losses, adding that “this is one of the best initiatives that can help address all our struggles with the post-harvest issues in the region and beyond”.

“In fact we have been struggling with post-harvest issues but this training has given us more information as to what we should do better. We have learnt so much and going forward we are going to integrate the practices and the standards of the WRS into our extension activities so we can reach out to as many farmers as possible within the coming months, Mr. Stephen K. Yelsung from the extension division of the regional department of agriculture disclosed at the end of the training program.

Mr. Iddrisu Mahamadu, Wa Municipal Extension Division of the Department of Agriculture on his part indicated that, the Warehouse Receipt System and its interventions present many opportunities for farmers to make more money from their grains that can lead to improvement in their livelihoods. “I think this intervention is really helpful and it has many opportunities for smallholder farmers to get what they really deserve for their produce in terms of money. Going forward we need to let farmers know and we can do this by training other extension officers so we can get to more farmers as soon as possible”.

With financial support from the Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), the IFC Ghana WRS project is being implemented in nine regions across the country. The project is providing advisory and technical support aimed at setting up a well-functioning regulated WRS that is expected to help reduce post-harvest storage loses and facilitate an increased access to financial services and structured markets to farmers and the supply chain. This intervention focuses on strengthening the WRS ecosystem for the successful operations of the Ghana Commodity Exchange (GCX).