A project launch workshop was hosted on 10 July 2008 by the CSIR-Food Research Institute at the Erata Hotel Accra. The aim of the workshop was to inform key stakeholders about the project and initial activities. The workshop was chaired by Professor Owusu Benoah, Director General of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research. The Hon. Minister of Food and Agriculture, represented by the Chief Director of Agriculture, and the Hon. Minster of Education, Science and Sport, represented by the Deputy Minister, gave keynote addresses.
A project overview was presented by Andrew Westby, Project Director, and a detailed work programme for the formative studies was presented by the Country Manager, Dr Nanam Tay Dziedzoave. Goodwill messages and statements of key issues were made by Mr AA Agyekum, coordinator of the IFAD-funded Root and Tuber Improvement and Marketing Programme and Mr J Faalong, Coordinator of the West Africa Agriculture Productivity Programme. There then followed a question and answer session for stakeholders to seek clarifications and raise key issues. The workshop was attended about 90 participants that included representatives from the private sector, public sector, farmers groups and NGOs. Over the next two months the project team will undertake formative studies that will lead to a specific detailed country strategy.