Solidaridad has officially launched the National Initiatives for Sustainable and Climate-Smart Oil Palm Smallholders (NISCOPS) Program in Ghana aimed at enhancing the production systems, improving profits while protecting the environment.
The program is one of many initiatives introduced by the International Company to promote capacity building while targeting the growth of partnered sectors.
The NISCOPS program which is set to be implemented by Solidaridad in Ghana will take a five-year duration period with benefits expected to be felt in the long run.
The program which is expected to cost 60 Million Euros will be funded by the government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Other partners that will be working with Solidaridad on the NISCOPS include Chief Executives of selected Districts from selected Regions, National Board of Small Scare Industries, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture as well as the local government.
Speaking at the official launch of the program at the Alisa Hotel in Accra on Friday, January 17, 2020, Mr. Isaac Gyamfi who is the West Africa Regional Director at Solidaridad indicated that the company is trying to expand the work of oil palm smallholders with a priority to maximize profits and protect the environment.
“So all we are trying to do in the oil palm sector is to improve land use, enhance efficiency in production systems, make people make money in the process of the fresh fruit bunches also make money”, he shared.
He added, “We are happy as an organization with 50 years of experience in pushing for sustainable practices to work with all new partners to make sure that we bring all palm production systems and processing to the level where we will no longer destroy the forest and we will contribute to a resilient ecosystem”
According to Mr. Isaac Gyamfi, Solidaridad cannot do it alone and that is why they are partnering with the District Chief Executives (DCE), Chief Directors, Policymakers, the national development planning committee, and others.
On her part, the deputy head of Mission at the Embassy of the Kingdom of Netherlands in Ghana, Katja Lasseur opined that her government hopes their support can recognize the urgent need to accelerate local economic development interventions and to make efforts towards Sustainable Development Goals of zero hunger, decent work, and economic growth.
She added, “As the Dutch government we place sustainability at the heart of commodity value chance development such as oil palm and cocoa. The sustainability pillars are deepening our work and spur our economic and social and in doing so we hope to contribute to increasing yields of farmers, building their resilience against climate change and helping them adapt to the changing plan”.
In addition to the launch of NISCOPS, a 9-member national advisory committee has been inaugurated, bringing together experts in the oil palm industry to advise on how to ensure the success of the program.
Meanwhile, Solidaridad will be running the same NISCOPS program in Nigeria with that one expected to be implemented by IDH.