Cocoa and cashew farmers get US$22m funding from Olam

Some farmers in Ghana have benefited from a $22 million interest-free short-term financing under the Olam Livelihood Charter (OLC) of global agri-business giant, Olam International.

The OLC is Olam International’s flagship smallholder sustainability initiative, which caters for a total of 31,722 Ghanaian farmers in the cashew and cocoa sectors, cultivating a total of 73,968 hectors of land. Some 57% of these farmers are women.

Launched in 2010, the OLC is a global initiative which aims at bringing prosperity to farming and rural communities, building long-term relationships based on fairness and trust, and transferring skills and knowledge through partnerships.

The initiative now covers some 344,466 farmers in 17 countries worldwide, including Ghana.

The initiative is based on the principle that supporting smallholders with agri-training and seeds or fertiliser is not enough. Initiatives must be holistic in approach and tackle wider social, economic and environmental challenges to achieve mutually beneficial impacts in the long-term.

Besides enjoying access to short-term financing under the OLC in the course of the year, Ghanaian farmers were supplied some 155,500 quality seedlings and benefitted from 23,177 training days in Good Agricultural Practices.

Olam Ghana also conducted HIV/Aids awareness and testing campaigns and typhoid screening programmes for the farmers.

One of the programmes under the Olam Livelihood Charter with the farmers in Bia Juabeso has produced the world’s first verified climate smart cocoa with Rainforest Alliance.

“Without finance, there’s no farm investment. Without adequate nutrition or health care, farmers cannot fulfill their potential. Without environmental know-how, their landscape degrades,” explained Mr. Amit Agrawal, Country Head of Olam Ghana.

“Everyone stands to benefit from getting it right. When farming communities thrive, the economy grows and food security in Ghana is enhanced. Meanwhile, we at Olam can grow our business and provide our customers with consistent volumes of traceable, sustainable products,” he said.

Source credit: Myjoyonline.com

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