IFC, Switzerland backs Ghana’s five-year tree crops project worth US$100m

GHANA – Ghana’s Tree Crops Development Authority (TCDA), under the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, has launched a Five-Year Strategic and Implementation Plan geared towards the development of a competitive and sustainable tree crops industry in Ghana.

With a total cost of US$100 million, the project is financed by the government in partnership with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Switzerland.

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Launch of the initiative will serve as a major step towards the establishment of an investment framework to guide the mobilization of both public and private investments for the development of a competitive and sustainable tree crops industry in Ghana.

It targets 6 priority tree crops, namely cashew nuts, coconuts, mangoes, palm nuts, rubber and shea nuts.

The Tree Crops Development Authority (TCDA) was inaugurated in 2020 as a legal and institutional outcome of the Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD) programme, and would focus on the development of tree crops and lead the plan to diversify the country’s agriculture.

Meanwhile, the Wangara Green Ventures (Wangara), an impact investment fund in Ghana, has invested GHS 2.21 million (US$259,000) in Wami Agro Limited (Wami Agro), an AgriTech that supports farmers in rural Ghana.

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The investment will enable Wami Agro to provide smallholder farmers in the grains value chains with training, input credit and access to markets, a joint press release issued by the two firms, and shared with the Ghana News Agency, said.

It aims to create 25 direct jobs and support some 15,500 smallholder farmers over the next five years while improving farm yields by about 30 per cent.

The work of Wami Agro will also reduce post-harvest losses by at least 50 per cent and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 20 per cent.

“The investment from Wangara Green Ventures together with post-investment assistance will enable Wami Agro to further develop its technology platform, acquire new farm equipment, improve its working capital and strengthen its governance framework in order to scale its current impact and contribute to the realisation of the UN SDGs,” the statement said.

Wami Agro is an early-stage AgTech company, established in 2019, with its headquarters in Accra.

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The company works with a network of over 10,000 smallholder farmers and its mission is to use technology to solve some of the challenges faced by smallholder farmers in Ghana by providing agriculture input credit and access-to-markets.

“The Agric Input Credit entails the provision of seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, and farm mechanisation services to the smallholder farmers on a deferred payment basis.

“The access-to-market service connects smallholder farmers to ready markets by aggregating from the smallholder farmers and selling to institutional and bulk buyers,” it said.

Wangara Green Ventures is a climate-focused impact investment company that invests between GHS 300,000 to GHS 3,000,000 in Small and Growing Ghanaian Businesses (SGBs) that are making a social and environmental impact in Ghana.

The company also supports the growth and sustainability of these SGBs by making available pre-investment and post-investment Technical Assistance Grants.

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