How a full-service Seed Shop is helping farmers grow their crops – and their incomes.
“Agriculture has always been my passion,” says Mrs. Afia Owusu-Nyantaki, the owner of the Seed Shop in Gomoa East, in Ghana’s Central Region. “I used to buy and sell vegetable and flower seeds.”
That was 12 years ago. Now, as Mrs. Owusu-Nyantaki says, she’s one of the “renowned women in agribusiness in Ghana.”
Over the years, the Seed Shop transformed from a retail store into a full-service agribusiness that deals in fertilizers, quality seeds and a wide range of pesticides. It also provides pre-planting tractor services and assists all the way through to post-harvest, including carting, shelling, drying, cleaning, warehousing and marketing of maize.
After harvesting, the off-take from the famer helps pay the cost of the fertilizer, allowing the remaining balance to go to the farmers. The Seed Shop currently serves about 3,960 farmers through this arrangement.
“Fertilizer sales are always better when farmers have access to an output market,” says Mrs. Owusu-Nyantakyi, whose business is based in the rich cocoa-growing region. “The farmers are happy with this arrangement and I am hopeful we will continue to offer this service to organized farmer associations in the years ahead.”
The company currently serves 65 farmer-based organizations (FBOs), each with an average membership of 50. It also supplies fertilizers to 60 members of the Central Regional branch of the Seed Producers Association of Ghana on credit through an off-take arrangement.
When the Seed Shop wanted to expand its fertilizer storage capacity from 600 tons to 1,600 tons to serve its network of 40 rural-agrodealers and 12,000 smallholder farmers, Mrs. Owusu-Nyantaki applied to AFAP for support in the construction of an additional warehouse.
Now that it’s up and running, what’s next for the Seed Shop?
“Now I need a truck that will help me pick up my products and produce on time from my suppliers,” she says.