OCP Africa, a subsidiary of OCP Group—a world leader in the phosphate and fertilizer—and the Burkina Faso Ministry of Agriculture, represented by its crop production agency, have joined forces to launch the OCP School Lab. The pilot campaign, officially launched on February 16, aims to train 2,000 farmers in good agricultural practices to help them increase their crop yields. This traveling school will enable teams of agronomists from the two bodies to travel the roads of the Hauts-Bassins region over two months, meeting farmers.
The OCP School Lab program, composed of a traveling school and a digital component, is a unique educational program. Support for farmers is mainly provided through awareness sessions on agricultural best practices for the dominant crops in the regions where they are located—in the case of Burkina Faso, corn. In addition, the mobile application offering fertilization advice makes it possible to carry out a real-time diagnosis of soil fertility and to provide recommendations for fertilizer formulas for crops in the region. The OCP School Lab program has already been launched in five African countries (Nigeria, Togo, Ghana, Côte d'Ivoire and Kenya), to which Burkina Faso has now been added.
In Burkina Faso, the OCP School Lab will meet 2,000 farmers in 20 villages in the Hauts-Bassins region: 600 farmers will receive fertilizer recommendations and all of the 2,000 farmers will have access to educational materials. This partnership will continue during 2018 and will be extended to other regions of Burkina Faso, in order to reach as many farmers as possible and thus sustainably improve the country’s agricultural yields.
Karim Lotfi Senhadji, CEO of OCP Africa, adds, “Training in good agricultural practices is at the heart of OCP Africa's strategy. In Burkina Faso, we intend to support local farmers in maximizing and sustaining their yields through the adoption of appropriate and measured fertilization.”