T JAL Enterprises, an agro dealer company in the sub region, has introduced new kinds of fertilizers and agrochemicals on the local market, and many smallholder farmers have started to testify about the great benefits of the company’s products.
Access to quality and affordable agro chemicals and tools still remains a serious challenge for smallholder farmers in Liberia. Many farmers also lack the right education on how to use agro inputs available to them in the farming communities.
To improve the incomes generation of smallholder farmers, T JAL Enterprises has partnered with agro-dealers in Liberia in order for farmers to access quality and affordable agro-inputs. The company after its certification by the Ministry of Agriculture, to make business in the country, has established large demo farms in Bong and Nimba counties to educate smallholder farmers to teach farmers on the right use of agro-inputs.
At well-organized programs to acquaint TJAL Enterprises’ intervention with smallholder farmers, farmers in the two counties (Bong and Nimba) recently expressed a great impression about the new kind of products being introduced to them. The programs were attended by officials of the Ministry of Agriculture, smallholder farmers and agro-dealers as well as members of T JAL.
“We have had a very serious challenge when it comes to growing vegetables like tomatoes and carrots. Those kinds of crops are not usually grown by us here in Liberia because we lack the technologies and knowledge to grow them. But since we got to know about the products from TJAL Enterprises, we are now being challenged to grow those exotic vegetables, said Joe S. Sehneah, a farmer from Gbendin, Nimba County.
Sehneah said that they are learning the knowledge from the demo farm established in his community.
“I visited this demo farm to get an education on how to grow crops that I considered difficult to grow. Today, I have tomatoes and other crops on my farm growing very well. This is going to improve my incomes dramatically as these crops are very expensive on the local market,” Sehneah said.
For his part, Frederick Gongatee of the Rainforest Agriculture Enterprise, in Nimba County said his business has partnered with TJAL to improve the incomes of farmers. Gongatee stated the demo farm is contributing greatly to enhancing the knowledge of farmers.
According to him, more than 300 farmers’ skills have now been enhanced through the demo farm and there are plans to reach more farmers in other communities.
“Liberian farmers have a lot of challenges when it comes to getting higher yield. We are experiencing low yields many times. Farmers are not using fertilizers to improve yield, but are involved in shifting cultivation. By bringing into the country improved planting materials will improve the yield of farmers, Gongatee said.
Gongatee added that other neighboring countries are making a lot of profits from the sale of vegetables through the use of appropriate fertilizers and chemicals. Speaking at the program held in Gbendin community, Nimba County, Morleeta Mends-Cole Chea, Assistant Director Crop Resource Division Department at the Ministry of Agriculture said it was important for Liberian farmers to acquaint themselves with the better usage of agro inputs.
She said Liberian farmers are finding it difficult to improve yield because of limited knowledge on agro-inputs. Mrs. Chea used the occasion to thank TJAL Enterprise for partnering with agro-dealers in Liberia and promised her ministry’s commitment to working with the company.
Also, speaking, the President of the National Agro Inputs Dealers Association of Liberia (NADAL), Rebecca Kalayi called on Liberian farmers to take advantage of the knowledge and inputs being provided by T JAL Enterprises. She said that there is a need for Liberian farmers to work harder to produce more food for the country.
The Executive director of TJAL, Amadou Jalloh who spoke earlier during the program explained that his company was in Liberia to assist farmers to get better profits from their labor.
According to Mr. Jalloh, his company has helped a lot of farmers in improving incomes generation in Guinea and Sierra Leone.