Purpose, formerly Concern Universal has conducted a two-day secondary
multiplication seminar and on-the-job training on Orange Flesh Sweet Potato
(OFSP) at the National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) head office in
The participants were drawn from all the regions in the country, partners, regional agriculture directors and consultants.
United Purpose project manager Ousman Jammeh said the training is designed from the Bio fortification project (Baluu Tim-Maringo Project) in The Gambia. He said the Baluu Tim-Maringo project is a four-year project funded by the European Union (EU) to the tune of 2.6 million Euros. He said United Purpose implements the project.
Mr. Jammeh stated that the overall objective of the project is to reduce under nutrition and poverty of vulnerable populations especially women and children in The Gambia by strengthening sustainable access and consumption of fortified food.
He also stated that lack of nutritious food and knowledge on nutrition is a challenge particularly for mothers, which results in critical deficiencies for children. He added that malnutrition is a problem throughout the country but varies in different local government areas.
According to Mr. Jammeh, the Baluu Tim-Maringo project is aimed at systematic and sustainable changes that will provide better health and nutrition based on value chain approach to ensure maximum sustainability. He said the strategy would be to adopt a bottom up approach of introducing new varieties of Bio fortified crops for Vitamin A rich orange flesh sweet potato, high Fe and Zn Pearl millet and enhance production and consumption of African leafy vegetables.
Dr. Tom Remington, United Purpose consultant on sweet potato from the United States said in The Gambia, the objective is to introduce new varieties of sweet potato that has high vitamin A. He divulged that the workshop comprises discussion on new six varieties.