Accra, Jan. 31, GNA
- The National Food and Agric Show (FAGRO) Secretariat, has released events
labelled as “action-packed” to guide its 2016 food and agriculture
demonstration, aimed at repositioning Ghana’s agricultural sector to boost food
security and slash poverty.
Officials at the secretariat say the fully-packed activities underline the secretariat’s unflinching commitment to make a compelling statement for Ghana to focus on agriculture as the pathfinder to sustainable development and food security.
“We have a very busy 2016 and we are convinced that the agricultural sector deserves even more than the attention we are dedicating,” Alberta Nana Akyaa Akosa, FAGRO Secretariat General Manager said in a media interaction in Accra.
“When agricultural takes it pride of place, Ghana’s developmental agenda will be greatly stepped up and the Secretariat is committed to the successfully roll out all these events this year as our contribution to making the sector attractive to the rest of the population,” she added.
The Secretariat in collaboration with Spain-based agricultural marketing and consultancy firm - Naxan - would roll out the maiden Spanish-FAGRO Agric Trade Investment Programme in Navarra, Spain from March 7 to 11.
The programme is expected to expose players in Ghana’s agriculture front to learn best practices in the European country - Spain while offering the Ghanaian farmers opportunities for strategic alliances and investments.
Between April 12 and 13, FAGRO Secretariat said, there would be Agric Career Show to offer students in agric-oriented institutions vital insight into job and career prospects in their chosen field of study.
“They will also be brought in the know about internship opportunities in the sector [agriculture] which they can take advantage of to synthesise their academic work with some worthwhile practical experience,” Nana Akosa said.
“The All State Leadership Camp, which comes off in June in Bailey, Colorado will have two Ghanaians - a student offering agriculture and a young farmer to participate in the week-long programme,” she said, indicating it would enrich their knowledge and practice and offer them ‘life-changing networking opportunities.’
Each summer, young members of the United States’ National Farmers Union (NFU) with demonstrated leadership abilities meet to explore leadership issues and discuss their role in affecting positive change at the camp.
The 2nd National Agric Summit would serves as the Secretariat’s unique platform for dialogue with stakeholders including development partners, researchers, farmer groups, government agencies and corporate leaders on crucial issues confronting Ghana’s agricultural sector.
The secretariat described the day’s event as “confluence of ideas in repositioning agriculture for sustainable national development,” and create also a forum for constructive engagements aimed at building the knowledge base of stakeholders, besides enhancing their capacity to inform policy decisions for improved livelihood.
The Beginners Agribusiness Mentorship Initiative, a practical educational farming initiative, which targets students in Agric Colleges and Second Cycle institutions and ushers them into co-operative agribusiness ventures for three months, would tee off in September, the secretariat said.
The mentorship module, it said, which would feature three groups of students, each made of eight working on an acre of farmland, is aimed at redirecting students’ attention to making agriculture a priority career choice rather than a “frustration management venture,” as perceived by many.
The secretariat also announced that its frontline annual event - FAGRO Exhibition, which features general exhibitions, business to business meetings and field demonstrations for visitors would kick-start from October 11 to October 13.
Also labelling the event torchbearer that signposts agriculture as Ghana’s answer to its development dilemma, officials said the exhibition would bring together agric-oriented companies to showcase their products and policies, forge new business contacts and network with more than 1000 exhibitors during the three-day fair
The companies includes manufacturers, agri-input, financing companies, packaging companies, processing companies, irrigation, green housing companies, farmer-based organisations and directorates of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture.
“Workshops, training programmes and farm tours will also be organised during this period, It’s our flagship programme and has set the benchmark for other programmes to be rolled out every year by the Secretariat”, Nana Akosa noted.
“The National Farmers Union 2016 Women’s Conference, signs off the 2016 event year of the FAGRO Secretariat,” she said.
The conference is tipped to build on NFU’s experience in offering adult education classes specifically designed for women in agriculture, and provide them with important leadership and management skills as well as networking opportunities.
Nana Akosa said: “We need all stakeholders to demonstrate faith in us and partner with us to make our line-up of events successful and impactful.
“The Agric-oriented institutions should be benevolent to us in buying into our events so that we are not logistically handicapped in any of our events this year because we want to make them a reference point based on their impact and peerless relevance.”