March 2, 2024

GHANA: TAAT engages farmers on good agronomic practices

Ghanaian farmers observing the trials at vegetative and flowering stages

The Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) recently held a field day on good agricultural practices and climate-smart agricultural practices in Ghana.

Organised by the TAAT Vegetable Compact, the field day, which was held in six different Ghana communities, namely Methor Buo, Methor Yipaala, Kunyokuong, Tanchara, Babile, and Lawra, exposed farmers to good agronomic practices for tomato farming.

The training leveraged ongoing World Vegetable Centre’s (WorldVeg) projects to deliver a comprehensive learning experience for all participants and while building on what has already been achieved in the country.

The field day served multiple purposes, including educating and empowering farmers with sustainable practices, acting as a platform for information exchange, networking across the value chain, and technology demonstration.

The field event equally brought together 152 stakeholders such as vegetable farmers, the Department of Agriculture of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), input dealers, and fresh tomato marketers.

Mr. Richard Abgesi, MOFA Deputy Municipal Director, in expressing his excitement about the field day, acknowledged its timely contribution to improving access to the right farming knowledge for smallholder tomato farmers, perfectly aligning with the priorities of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ 2.0). 

He emphasized that organizing field days and training sessions aligns with the government’s mandate, although the challenge of lack of government funding remains a significant limitation to helping the country expand its capacity for such crucial capacity-building initiatives that reach thousands of farmers.

The TAAT Vegetable Compact leveraged an ongoing project focusing on Black Soldier Fly field trials, implemented by WorldVeg and partners (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture-IITA, Council of Scientific & Industrial Research-CSIR, and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture-MOFA).

Leveraging upon the trials funded by the Black Soldier Fly (BSF) Project, the TAAT Vegetable Compact showcased the high performance of Black Soldier Fly frass fertilizer, which is the waste product or excrement produced by black soldier fly larvae, on the productivity of tomatoes. 

The field day started with an insightful introductory session by Mr. Paul Zaato, TAAT Vegetable Compact Technology Officer, on the importance of applying the right farming practices at the various stages of tomato cultivation.


Farmers were guided through the tomato demonstration trial, which was at the flowering stages, where they witnessed firsthand the results of applying the right farming practices. Mr. Issah Alhassan, MOFA crops officer, provided insight on disease and pest identification, stressing the need for early intervention of frass application to ensure healthy plant growth.

Nutrient management practices were also highlighted, focusing on achieving optimal balance for robust vegetative development. Farmers also observed that tomato yellow leaf curl (TYLC) was the most prevalent disease on their tomato plants and thus were keen to understand how to manage this disease, which is an important constraint for many tomato farmers in the area. The TAAT Vegetable Compact educated farmers on integrated pest management techniques to curb the incidence of TYLC.

“We struggle a lot with diseases on our tomato fields and we are happy to learn about how to handle these diseases to improve our yields” as reiterated by a male farmer.

Mr. Paul Zaato emphasized the importance of mulching and encouraged farmers to adopt this practice. Farmers, however, complained about the tediousness of this process and its extensive labour requirements. They eventually agreed that it is a good practice and will adopt it in their fields.