Ghana to use smartphones to send agric info to farmers


Ghana’s Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) is to start using mobile phones to disseminate information on agriculture among farmers to increase productivity.
The new technology being implemented by a consultant under the West Africa Agricultural Productivity Programme Two (WAAPP-2) would be piloted in some selected districts in the Northern Region.
Farmers will be introduced to an e-extension hub through a central portal to be located to serve the nation with data and information.
Mr Emmanuel Alorigiya, Communication Officer of WAAP, who disclosed this in Tamale on Tuesday during a sensitisation workshop, said the aim of the e-extension platform is to efficiently disseminate information to farmers using common languages that many farmers understand.
He said adequate agricultural ideas would be transmitted through the platform to capture, store and retrieve information by farmers using standard smart mobile phones.
“There are very few agriculture extension officers in the country and this is the best way to educate farmers, » he said.
WAAPP is a World-Bank-funded project, which started in 2007 to 2012 as a first phase at the cost of $15 million.


The second phase started in 2012 and ends in 2017 at the total cost of $60 million as a loan to the country.
Mr Alorigiya said the project, which is being implemented in 13 West African countries, is targeting tuber crops in its first phase but was up-scaled to general agricultural productivities which facilitate research and crop variety development and dissemination.
He said the project shares knowledge and technology aligned with regional priorities to address poverty and food insecurity through regional cooperation and integration.
This success story was shared among the participating countries.
Through the success of the phase one, he said a lot of crop varieties had been