Green for Change, in collaboration with USAID through its funded Feed the Future Ghana Trade and Investment (GTI) Activity, has organized a workshop to enhance the skills of smallholder cashew farmers on harvest and post-harvest management, including nut quality in the West Gonja municipality of the Savannah region.
The project, which will last for six months, will cover six communities in the West Gonja municipality and directly benefit 300 smallholder cashew producers’ households from the targeted communities. According to John Balankoo Sumbo, the Executive Director of Green for Change, the organization is focused on cashew production because it is one of the rapidly growing cash crops in the West Gonja Municipality and a source of livelihood for many households.
He added that the farmers are not reaping the full potential of cashew production due to low yield, and most of them lack knowledge of good silvicultural practices, which include harvest and post-harvest management techniques, limiting their ability to increase productivity. Mr. Sumbo further stated that the project would enhance the capacity of cashew farmers, and their cashew business would be more profitable.
The project will cover topics such as harvest and post-harvest management, nut quality, negotiation, entrepreneurship, and access to competitive markets for raw cashew nuts. Mr. Sumbo also encouraged the farmers to use improved planting materials and other practices to increase their yields amid the changing climate.
It is worth noting that farmers have a poor understanding of cashew markets and often compete instead of cooperating to sell their cashews, making it difficult to negotiate fair deals with middlemen. The project will equip them with knowledge on these topics so that they can negotiate better deals and increase their profits.