United States Agency for International Development (USIAD), has launched the Ghana Market Systems and Resilience (MSR) Activity project that is set to boost food security and improve the livelihood citizens in the country.
The agency issued a $35.9 million grant package to support to support the project. MSR will be a five-year project that aims to increase production of maize, shea, bambara beans, soybeans, cowpea, groundnuts, tomatoes, pepper, onion, mango and moringa, and their value addition.
The project mainly targets smallholder farmers, particularly, women and youth, as well as out-growers, buyers, processors and exporters. Through the grant facility, which takes effect from March 2023, smallholder farmers and other value chain actors would have access to a financing amount between $5,000 and $25,000 for various projects.
The project would increase off-farm employment and investment opportunities and help solve value chain challenges including single growing season, limited access to land, water, inputs and services and fragmented markets. About 200,000 individuals will be the project’s beneficiaries.
“The essence of the grant project was to make sure that the market system was more resilient, more robust and inclusive. USAID wants to start the project’s rollout as soon as possible, so they would fast-track processes for beneficiaries to access the grant after four to eight weeks of vetting. The project is to support and strengthen the agric market system for increased efficiency, productivity and investment to drive economic growth and increase incomes of households in catchment regions. We’ll target women and youth and people with disabilities and focus on commodities that would promote those elements. We want to make sure that the market system is resilient and sustainable, and we’re really committed to it,” said Mr Raymond Denteh, Agribusiness and Financial Services Team Leader, MSR Activity, Ghana.