Yara Ghana, a leading supplier of fertilizer, in collaboration with the USAID, has facilitated a training on soil and fertilizer amendments in Tamale, for technical staff working on different agricultural related projects.
The participants were further taken through various methods of soil sampling, how to determine the nutrient deficiency and how to amend the soil to correct it, Yara Ghana said in a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency on Monday.
Mr Derrick Tuffour- Mills, Technical Manager of Yara, Ghana, called on smallholder farmers in Ghana to inculcate the practice of soil and foliar analysis, in order to determine the exact nutrients needed by crops in order to maximise fertilizer usage.
He also highlighted the need for farmers to learn about their crops and their nutritional requirements, in order to know which nutrients to prescribe for them.
He said: “for Yara, it is not an issue of one size fits all, that is why application competence is key in the Yara crop nutrition concept hence the need for Yara to continually share knowledge which will ultimately help improve farmer profitability and environmental sustainability’
The Technical Manager also took the participants through Basic Crop Nutrition involving basic nutritional requirements of crops, but with specific reference to cereal crops that Yara was supporting USAID on over 130 demonstration farms.
During a field trip to some USAID demonstration farms being supported by Yara Ghana, the statement said, the team visited two sites at Golinga and Surugu near Tamale.
The rice farm at Golinga, using the Yara recommendation of YaraMila Actyva, was doing well as compared to the other fields using the traditional practice, the statement said, as the same was noticed at the maize farm at Surugu which was dry and about to be harvested.
It also quoted the Technical Director of USAID, Alan Pineda, as having expressed excitement about the collaboration between USAID and Yara which birthed the opportunity for both organizations to share knowledge, especially with Yara being a foremost leader in crop nutrition research and provision.
He expressed the hope that the training programme would go a long way to sharpen the technical competency of the USAID field staff on the various projects they were currently involved in.
A total of 46 staff of the USAID from across the country involved in different USAID projects benefited from the technical training.
Yara Ghana has so far supported the establishment of 130 crop demonstrations farms -100 maize demos and 30 rain-fed rice demos – with premium Yara fertilizers in collaboration with the USAID’s ADVANCE Project in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions, during the 2015 production season.
About 13,000 farmers from the Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions have benefited so far from the project which is to help boost crop production.