Stakeholders in the agriculture sector are advocating for the use of local waste materials to produce organic fertilizer for farmers in the wake of the skyrocketing prices of imported fertilisers.
They said there were abundant materials, including high volumes of waste food and crop residues that produced unwanted gasses, which could be turned into organic fertilizer to support organic farming.
The stakeholders also emphasised the need to use both local and modern approaches to enhance the agro-processing sector in order to reduce post-harvest losses and ensure food safety.
It brought together civil society organisations in agriculture and representatives of government agencies, including the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) and the Environmental Protection Agency.
Mr Bismark Owusu Nortey, the Programme Officer of the Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana, said the current global development had intensified the need for mobilisation and use of domestic resources for the benefit of the country.
He said there was traditional knowledge of sustainable farming practices, which qualified to be climate-smart agriculture practices that aligned with agroecological concepts.
Mr Nortey explained agroecology as a sustainable farming practice that worked with nature and created synergies, balancing environmental, social and economic considerations.
Agroecology practices, he said, made use of natural processes and avoid chemicals such as pesticides and fertilizers, and reduced the environmental harm of food production while stabilising yields.
Mr Kingsley Kwasi Agyemang, an official at the Directorate of Crop Service of the MoFA, said the FAO’s report had concluded that agroecology increased climate resilience by building on ecological principles such as biodiversity and healthy soils.
Mr Agyemang said the project sought to strengthen the resilience of West African populations in terms of food and nutritional security through the dissemination of best practices.