KAC Student Managed Farms (SMF)

PROJECT RATIONAL/BACKGROUND

Kwadaso Agricultural College (KAC) is a premier agricultural institution in Ghana with a student population of 1000 students and 77 teaching and non-teaching staff. Kwadaso Agricultural College is situated among two additional public agricultural institutions namely, Soil Research Institute (SRI) and Crops Research Institute (CRI) of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Reaserch (CSIR). In total, there are over 600 agricultural staff and family members living on campus. Additionally, over 10,000 residents of the Kwadaso Municipal interact directly and indirectly on a monthly basis with Kwadaso Agricultural College.

There are crops and livestock projects currently running at the Kwadaso Agricultural College with support from the NICHE-270 GH project. However, none of these projects have students playing a leading role in terms of day to day running of the project. 

The proposed KAC Student Managed Farms (KSM – FARMS) project seeks to fill this gap by providing students of the college an opportunity to play a leading role and in running a commercial agribusiness farm enterprises. Tutors of the college will play a supervisory role to ensure the students are on track and to provide useful advise where necessary.

This business seeks to establish continuous supply of pork and seedlings to the Ghanaian market. Seedlings and Pork are in high demand in the Kumasi Metropolis. This business is financed by the Global Affairs Canada in partnership with TEDMAG, the University of Saskatchewan, the University of Missouri Assistance Program and the HRDMD of MOFA.

TEAM MEMBERS

Due process in line with the guidelines of the Student Managed and Commercial Demonstration Farms was followed to select team leadership for the project. The team comprises of three categories namely the Strategic Management Unit, Student Leaders and Tutor Supervisors.

The KAC Student Managed Farms strategic management unit are:

  • Rev. Mr. Benjamin Asante Mensah (Principal, Kwadaso Agricultural College),
  • Rev. John Manu (Ashanti Regional Director of MoFA),
  • Dr. Jonas Osei Adu (External Agribusiness Expert) ,
  • Mr. Kwame Ansah Baffour (Agribusiness and Economics Tutor Representative & KAC Student Managed Farms Project Coordinator),
  • Miss Mavis Akorli (Student Representative),
  • Mr. Opoku (Accountant, Kwadaso Agricultural College).
Student Managed Farms Student Leaders

The KAC Student Managed Farms student leaders are:

  • Mavis Korli –  3rd Year Student(Finance Manager)
  • Emmannuel Dzotepe – 3rd Year Student (Human Resource Manager)
  • Gilbert Dordoye – 2nd Year Student (Production Manager)
  • Philomina Ayomah – 2nd Year Student (Marketing Manager)
  • Patrict Lamptey Tetteh – 1st Year Student (Public Relations and Communication Manager)
  • Benedicta Larbi – 1st Year Student (Research and Development Manager)

The KAC Student Managed Farms tutor supervisors are:

  • Mr. Albert Appiah Amoakoh (Human Resource Supervisor)
  • Madam Joyce Asiedu Larbi (Marketing Supervisor)
  • Mr. Kwame Ansah Baffour (Public Relations and Communication Supervisor)
  • Madam Patience Nyarkoa Danso (Research and Development Supervisor)
  • Mr. Eric Afari (Finance Supervisor)
  • Nana Yaw Asomaning Akosah (Production Supervisor)

Kwame Ansah Baffour is the coordinator for the KAC Student Managed Farms.

KEY ACTIVITIES

KAC Student Managed Farms began with the selection of student leaders, tutor supervisors and the strategic management unit. In consultation with the Animal Science Department and the Principal of Kwadaso Agricultural College, a mini pig structure belonging to KAC was released to kick start the KAC Student Managed Farms (KAC SMF) pig production component of the project. The pig structure was renovated and partitioned to suit the project. Also, through a formal approach, the Crop and Soil Science department has released a land for the commencement of the KAC SMF seedlings production.

For the pig production, 4 sows of which one was pregnant were purchased from Shammo Farms at Trede, Ashanti Region. To avoid inbreeding, 1 Boar was purchased from another pig farmer at Adidwan, Mampong to cross the 3 sows which were not pregnant. The pregnant sow delivered 14 piglets (8 male and 6 female) on the 7th of May, 2021. Another sow delivered 10 piglets on 30th June, 2021. The project currently has 24 piglets, 4 sows and 1 Boar. One (1) tonne of quality pig feeds were purchased and formulated using the KAC feed mixer. Pig feeds purchased and formulated in their right proportion include Hendrix, wheat bran, maize, soyabean, copra cake, oyster shells and toxic binder. Recommended medications namely penstrip injection, multivitamin, M-Iron, D4+ disinfectant, Multileva 10% injection were purchased and used when necessary. Based on recommendation of students, a poly tank was purchased to ensure timely availability of water for the project. Also, tools and protective equipment has been purchased to ensure the safety of students.

Fencing materials including 2 inch galvanized round pipe, wire mesh, metal rod locker and binding wire were purchased for the fencing of the seedlings production site. The seedlings production is almost at the point of take off.

The team were privileged to take part in an onsite capacity building training workshop organized by TEDMAG on 19th to 21st May, 2021 at Kwadaso Agricultural College. 20 students were invited to take part in Day 2 of the workshop which focused on Agribusiness Simulation Game.  The team were equipped with versatile agribusiness management skills set as well as increase in entrepreneurial intentions and capacities. The training focused on Student Managed Farms, Agribusiness Incubation Hub and the Ghanasim (an agribusiness simulation game).

TARGETS / EXPECTED OUTCOMES

The targets or expected outcomes include:

  • The SMF Team are expecting to have at least 33 pigs weighing 70 kg each by the end of the year 2021.
  • The team has targeted to produce at least 100 coconut seedlings, 100 avocado seedlings, 100 grafted mango seedlings, and 100 orange seedlings by the end of the year 2021.
  • Above all, the team is expecting at least 100 students taking into consideration gender to acquire practical employable/entrepreneurial skills in piggery and seedlings production by the end of the year 2021.

KEY PARTNERS

Key partners of the project during the first quarter include:

  • Shammo Farms
  • Kumasi Institute of Tropical Agriculture
  • Adidwan Farms
  • Crop Research Institute,
  • Soil Research Institute,
  • TEDMAG,
  • the University of Saskatchwan,
  • the University of Missouri Assistance Program and
  • the HRDMD of MOFA.

NEXT STEPS

The team has planned the next steps below:

  • Construction of KAC SMF Piggery structure
  • Fencing of KAC SMF Nursery production site
  • Production of seedlings
  • Newsletter
  • Monitoring and evaluation

CHALLENGES

The project has encountered the following challenges within the first quarter. These include:

  • Difficulty in detecting as early as possible when a sow gets pregnant: the research and development manager will be tasked to explore options and innovations that will enable the detection as early as possible when a sow gets pregnant
  • Financial challenges: pig production is a very profitable and lucrative business, however it is capital intensive. The team has economically managed the funds at our disposable very well and it is our hope that additional funds will help us to construct our own pig structure to be able to contain the increasing number of piglets after weaning. At the moment, we need an additional funds to construct a suitable piggery structure for the project.

SKILLS GAINED FROM THE KAC SMF PROJECT

Students have acquired the following skills from the project

  • Quality pig feed formulation
  • Practical management of pig production business
  • Team building and networking with industrial players
  • Negotiation and time management
  • Identification of different breeds of pigs

REQUEST FOR COLLABORATION

The project team welcomes all stakeholders including development partners, alumni, volunteers, partners and everyone who want to partner, support, or build their capacities in commercial piggery and seedlings production.