The Growth Enhancement Support Scheme (GESS) is one of the cardinal schemes under the Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA) which focuses on one of the major inputs for Crop production – FERTILIZER.
Farmers used to have difficulty in procuring fertilizer in the right quantity and at the right time. The GES Scheme is a policy which represents a pragmatic shift within the existing Fertilizer Market Stabilization Programme.
The policy puts the resource constrained farmer at its centre through the provision of series of incentives to encourage the critical actors in the fertilizer value chain to work together to improve productivity, household food security and income of the farmer.
THE GOALS OF GESS
The goals of this policy include
Target 5 million farmers in each year for 4 years that will receive GESS in their mobile phone directly. This gives a total number of 20 million at the end of 4 years.
To provide support directly to farmers to enable procurement of agricultural inputs at affordable prices, at the right time and place.
To increase productivity of farmers across the length and breadth of the country through increased use of fertilizer i.e. 50kg/ha from 13kg/ha.
Change the role of Government from direct procurement and distribution of fertilizer to a facilitator of procurement, regulator of fertilizer quality and catalyst of active private sector participation in the fertilizer value chain
Achievements to date
So far, the FMA&RD had identified 17 big time fertilizer suppliers who are committed to participate in the scheme.
They will feed
– About 2,500 agro-dealers (certified by IFDC) and spread across the country.
– The suppliers will feed another 1,780 agro-dealers that are yet to be certified.
List of verified agro-dealers were compiled and sent to all participating banks and Cellulant
All participating farmers would have their data captured by Cellulant.
– Site and Crop Specific Fertilizer Formulation have been developed for the 36 States and FCT to ensure that crops express their maximum genetic potential in an enabling soil environment
Pilot demonstration of the implementation of the e-wallet was carried out by in 2012/2013 to test the technology platform
It is expected that the scheme will be fully operational in 2014 with the release of N14 billion by the Federal Government to boost dry season farming.
Source: Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural development.