Nyankpala, Aug. 24 – The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research – Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (CSIR-SARI) has unveiled the Ricowas project, aimed at upscaling climate-resilient rice production in West Africa. Funded by the Adaptation Fund and supported by Observatoire Du Sahara Et Du Sahel Sahara and Sahel Observatory, this initiative seeks to bolster both human and institutional capacities in Climate-Resilient Rice Production (CRRP).
The project’s objectives encompass scaling up the System of Rice Intensification (SRI), which is a sustainable farming methodology designed to enhance yields while conserving resources and reducing environmental impact. It operates across seven regions in Ghana, including Northern, Upper East, Savannah, Volta, Oti, Western North, and Ashanti, with CSIR-SARI overseeing the northern sector and the CSIR-Crops Research Institute (CSIR-CRI) coordinating the southern region.
Dr. Francis Kusi, Director of CSIR-SARI, emphasized the project’s aim of achieving sustainable rice production. Professor Paul F. Bosu, Director-General of CSIR, highlighted its potential to reduce rice imports and promote food security. With 15 high-quality rice varieties released within 39 years, CSIR-SARI’s Mr. Alex Yeboah encouraged the public to support locally produced, healthier Ghanaian rice.
Representing the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Dr. John Manu, Ashanti Regional Director of Agriculture, pledged strategic technological support for project implementation. Dr. Issah Sugri, Senior Research Scientist and the Deputy Director at CSIR-SARI and Project Monitor, called for stakeholder collaboration to ensure the project’s success.
The Ricowas project embodies a significant step toward enhancing rice production, improving food security, and promoting sustainable agricultural practices in West Africa.