Ghana has clearly defined policies that guide the development and implementation of agricultural programs, as well as the exploitation of various commodities in the country.
Food and nutrition security through self-sufficiency is a policy priority in Ghana. The following outlines some of the major policies guiding Ghana’s agricultural development.
Comprehensive African Agricultural Development Program (CAADP)
Ghana was one of the first African countries to sign the CAADP Compact in 2009 under the African Union’s (AU) New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). By committing to invest 10% of annual government expenditure in agriculture, Ghana reaffirmed its aspirations by placing agriculture as the engine of social and economic growth.
At the AU Heads of State meeting in Malabo in 2015, Ghana agreed to improve the provision of farm inputs, appropriate knowledge, information, and skills to smallholder farmers and create job opportunities for at least 30% of the youth in agricultural value chains for inclusive agricultural growth transformation.
ECOWAS Agricultural Policy
At the regional level, Ghana, as a member of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), has adopted the ECOWAS Agricultural Policy (ECOWAP) under the regional CAADP Compact.
ECOWAP envisages modern and sustainable agriculture, based on the effectiveness and efficiency of family farms and the promotion of the private sector for productive and competitive intracommunity and international markets.
ECOWAP is implemented through a Regional Agricultural Investment Plan (RAIP), which emphasizes the sustainable development of farms through integrated management of soil fertility, strengthening of support services provided to producers and dissemination of improved technologies.
RAIP prioritizes the development of value chains, peri-urban agriculture, and promotion of national, regional, and international trade.
Ghana’s Shared Growth and Development Agenda II (GSGDA-II)
The GSGDA-II underscores the importance of improving the productivity of crops and livestock; accelerating job creation; and enhancing the competitiveness of the sector to ensure its integration into the domestic and international markets.
The coordinated program of economic and social development policies (2014-2020) under Ghana’s vision 2020 envisages transformed agriculture with forwarding and backward linkages to the industrial and services sectors.
Food and Agricultural Sector Development Policy (FASDEP II)
The long-term agricultural sector-specific policy objectives are provided in Ghana’s Food and Agriculture Sector Development Policy (FASDEP II).
Asserting that the productivity of crops is low, the FASDEP II (2007-2015) envisages support for enhancing productivity at the national and agro-ecological levels for priority staple crops and sets annual targets for productivity and production growth of selected commodities in each district.
Medium Term Agriculture Sector Investment Plan (METASIP-II)
The medium-term plan for implementation of FASDEP II in Ghana is represented by Medium-Term Agriculture Sector Investment Plan (METASIP).
The METASIP-II (2010-2015) also provides a roadmap for the implementation of the NEPAD and Africa Union’s Comprehensive African Agricultural Development Program (CAADP) to which Ghana is a signatory.
It focuses on investments for addressing constraints on productivity, market access and sustainable production. Through a sector wide approach, it aims to increase productivity at the farm level through continued research on improvement of priority commodities, improved access to appropriate inputs, improved access to extension services, increased adoption of Integrated Crop Pest Management (ICPM) measures and linkage to markets.
The Government of Ghana (GoG) has recently validated the policy matrices for METASIP-I and II and has further developed a roadmap for METASIP-III (2018-2021).
Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ)
The “Planting for Food and Jobs’ (PFJ) is a flagship program under the METASIP-III until 2020. Initiated by the GoG, the “Planting for Food and Jobs” (PFJ) program of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) has motivated farmers to adopt certified seeds and fertilizers through a private sector-led marketing framework, by raising the incentives and complimentary service provisions on the usage of inputs, good agronomic practices, marketing of outputs over an E-Agriculture platform.
Ghana Agriculture Sector Investment Programme (GASIP)
The Ghana Agriculture Sector Investment Programme (GASIP) provides a long-term investment framework that will contribute to the realization of METASIP.
Through a 3-year cycle, the GASIP also provides for supplementary financing for scaling-up investments in private sector-led agricultural value chain development. Ghana’s agricultural policy framework is guided by various international frameworks that the country has signed on and adopted.