LIBERIA: USAID-FED Program Targets 96,000 Farmers

The Chief of Party of the USAID Food and Enterprise Development (USAID FED) project, Agnes Luz,  has disclosed a plan by the organization to work with and train more than 96,000 farmers from across the country to increase food production and security in Liberia.

Speaking at a USAID FED press roundtable held at the Mamba Point Hotel in Monrovia Wednesday, Madam Luz said the targeted population of farmers will include individuals and farming groups with emphasis on women and the youth community.

She noted that the targeted farmers in six of the country’s 15 political sub-divisions will be trained on how to use improved technologies and good agricultural practices to increase yields.

“We between now and September 2016 also intend to increase the use of spillway technology which allows farms to support two crop cycles per year,” Luz further disclosed.

She said in 2016 which marks the end of the five-year project, women will be encouraged to take ownership of their businesses through the expansion of the village savings and loan association.

According to the USAID FED Chief of Party, the project will during its life-span strengthen cassava value chain by building nurseries to supply improved and good quality planting materials to cassava farmers and micro-processors to increase their procurement of raw tubers.

She said already USAID FED is working with 40,779 small farmers in 38 districts in 1,341 villages with 2,210 farming sites for rice, cassava and vegetables covering 6,255 hectares of land.

The USAID funded project began in 2011 with a five-year life-span estimated at US$75 million.

It aims to increase production and profitability, stimulate enterprise growth and investment and develop workforce and technical capacity of farmers.

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