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General News of Sunday, 25 November 2018


CSIR-SARI marks 60th Anniversary with open day

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research-Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (CSIR-SARI) has organized an Open Day ceremony for stakeholders and the public to mark its 60th-anniversary celebration.

This was to engage and educate the public on CSIR's contributions and achievements for the past 60 years through the provision of appropriate technologies to help enhance food security and wealth creation in the country.

The ceremony under the theme: "CSIR-60 Years of Research with impact for Sustainable Development: The Contribution of CSIR-SARI", was also to give meaning to the institute's vision of making agricultural research responsive to the needs of farmers and national development.

The ceremony was attended by the District Chief Executive of Tolon, Dean of Faculty of Agriculture from the University for Development Studies at Nyankpala campus, some key stakeholders in the agricultural sector, traditional leaders, students, and other stakeholders.

Dr Stephen K. Nutsugah, Director of CSIR-SARI, said CSIR-SARI over the past 60 years has come out with 83 improved varieties of various crops including rice, cowpea, groundnuts, soya beans, cassava, sweet potato, cotton, Frafra potatoes and pearl millet.

He said these crop varieties are suitable to the country's climate conditions and all have the potential to address the production problems of farmers.

He said about 70 per cent of farmers in the country use improved crop varieties developed by CSIR over the years and about 90 per cent of the 160,000 hectares of groundnuts produced in northern Ghana were made up of varieties developed by CSIR-SARI.

Dr Nutsugah said through the CSIR-SARI's research activities in soil fertility improvement technologies, maize yield has been able to increase up to three tonnes per hectare with the use of inorganic fertilizer and up to four tonnes per hectare with mixtures of both organic and inorganic fertilizers at recommended rates.

He said inoculation of soya beans with rhizobium has increased yield by 30 to 40 per cent, that's from 0.8 tonnes per hectare to 1.5 tonnes per hectare.

He said CSIR-SARI with support from Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), had completed inoculant factory, capable of producing GH¢ 250,000 worth of inoculants per season.

Professor Abdullai Baba Salifu, a former Director General of CSIR-SARI, urged the institute to strengthen good relationship among its staff so as to enable efficiency in their delivery of goods and services for the agricultural development of the country.

He urged students to take-up science related courses as they climb the academic ladder to help improve on the country's capacity to harness science and technology for accelerated development.

Mrs Balchisu Yakubu, the District Chief Executive of Tolon, commended CSIR for their efforts towards promoting agricultural production in the north and urged them to continue to produce more seed breeders and foundation seeds as well as strengthen their relationship with farmers to help improve on their livelihood.

Some improved seed exhibition was also showcased during the ceremony as well as presentations on research activities and achievements made by the institute to improve on seed varietal development, soil fertility management and pest management in northern Ghana.