LIBERIA – Solidaridad West Africa, a champion of sustainable development, is playing a pivotal role in Liberia’s agricultural landscape by providing crucial technical support to the Central Agricultural Research Institute (CARI), the nation’s singular sectoral research institution.

As Liberia seeks to diversify its economy and enhance its agricultural productivity, Solidaridad, in collaboration with the European Union through the Cocoa Value Chain Development Program (COVADEP), has taken a significant step by constructing a state-of-the-art cocoa greenhouse at CARI.

The agriculture sector in Liberia, integral to the nation’s economic fabric, has grappled with challenges in research and development.

Solidaridad’s involvement aims to address these challenges and position CARI as a centre of excellence for agricultural research and innovation.

Dr Victor Sumo, Director General of CARI, acknowledged the historical obstacles faced by the institute, including a lack of research infrastructure, insufficient staff capacity, and weak research extension linkages.

However, the strategic partnership with Solidaridad is actively addressing these impediments.

The recently inaugurated cocoa greenhouse, funded at a total cost of $163,000 and supported by COVADEP, is poised to revolutionize cocoa production in Liberia.

Beyond serving as a research facility, the greenhouse provides a conducive environment for experimentation and the development of new agronomic practices.

It stands as a testament to Solidaridad’s commitment to fostering sustainable agricultural practices and driving positive change in Liberia’s cocoa sector.

Marvin Samuel, COVADEP Program Manager, expressed satisfaction with the project’s accomplishment, emphasizing its potential to positively impact cocoa studies.

The greenhouse is expected to contribute to advancements in agronomic practices, directly benefiting cocoa producers and processors.

Samuel noted that supporting the country’s sole agricultural research institution aligns with the broader goals of COVADEP, fostering increased productivity, commercialization, and competitiveness in Liberia’s agricultural sector.

Solidaridad’s partnership with CARI goes beyond infrastructure development. It aligns with Liberia’s strategic plans for agriculture, aiming to provide demand-driven knowledge, information, technologies, and innovations. The goal is to catalyze sustainable development, enhance livelihoods, and contribute to Liberia’s economic stability.

As Liberia envisions a diversified and resilient economy, investments in research and development, facilitated by organizations like Solidaridad, are instrumental in shaping the future of the country’s agriculture.

The cocoa greenhouse project is a testament to collaborative efforts that will not only benefit farmers and processors but also contribute to the broader economic well-being of Liberia.

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