Accra, GHANA: On August 24, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) and other development partners under Feed the Future-the United States government’s global hunger and food security initiative, launched the National Seed Trade Association of Ghana (NASTAG), a partnership between value chain actors in the seed industry.
At the event, the Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture, Hon. Dr. Sagre Bambangi and USAID/Ghana Agriculture Team Leader Jenna Tajchman highlighted the importance of growing Ghana’s seed industry to build a food secure future.
As part of the event, seven new Executive Council Members of the Association were inducted into office to grow the competitiveness of Ghana’s seed value chain. The Executive Council will work to strengthen the business and technical skills of its members, promote collaboration between seed value chain actors, advocate on regulations, standardization and the provision of general seed information to all stakeholders.
The Ghana Government has prioritized seed as a pillar in its flagship agriculture program, “Planting for Food and Jobs.” In Ghana, promoting the growth of the seed industry is a critical component to transforming the agriculture sector. Quality certified seed has the potential to boost agricultural productivity, as well as enhance food and nutrition security in the country.
“NASTAG provides all stakeholders, including the Ghana Government, relevant Ministry, Departments and Agencies and development partners with a platform led by the private sector,” remarked Hon. Dr Bambangi. “This Association will strengthen public-private dialogues and partnerships, address agricultural challenges and develop the seed sector.”
“We believe improving the seed sector is critical to Ghana’s economic growth,” remarked Ms Tajchman.” Developing Ghana’s seed sector is a top priority for USAID and its partners, and today’s launch is a milestone for the sector’s growth.”
NASTAG is supported by USAID through the Feed the Future Agriculture Policy Support Project, the Agriculture Technology Transfer project, AfricaRice, as well as the West Africa Seed project of CORAF, the African Seed Trade Association and other development partners.
The National Seed Trade Association of Ghana is an amalgamation of all seed value chain actors in the seed industry, which was established from a resolution passed by stakeholders at a USAID – Agriculture Policy Support Project (APSP)-sponsored meeting in Novembers 2015. NASTAG was officially registered in February 2016, as a not-for-profit membership-based association limited by guarantee. The Association is dedicated to supporting the competitiveness of Ghana seed value chain through business and technical capacity development of its members, promoting effective collaboration among and between industry players; serving as the mouthpiece on advocacy issues relating to seed and provision of general seed information. It has positioned itself to supporting the industry players to develop their niche to the fullest potential for individual and collective benefits; ultimately contributing to enhancing agricultural production that will improve farmers livelihoods and overall agriculture in Ghana. NASTAG is linked to regional bodies such as ASIWA, CORAF, WASP and AFSTA.
About Feed the Future:
Feed the Future is the U.S government’s global hunger and food security initiative. With a focus on smallholder farmers, particularly women, Feed the Future supports partner countries in developing their agriculture sectors to spur economic growth and trade that increase incomes and reduce hunger, poverty, and undernutrition. For more information, visit www.feedthefuture.gov
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