USING MOBILE PHONES TO ASSIST FARMERS IN WEST AFRICA
CocoaLink is a unique feature of the Learn to Grow
program that uses low-cost mobile technology to deliver practical agricultural and social information to rural cocoa farmers in West Africa.
Cell Phone as Farming Partner
CocoaLink leverages the cell phones most cocoa farmers use every day to share practical information with them, including information on good farming practices, fertilizer usage, farm safety, labor practices, health, pest and disease prevention, post-harvest handling and crop marketing. The information is delivered at no cost through voice and SMS text messages and data is collected to monitor and evaluate program effectiveness.
The Ghanaian Government Champions the Program
The Ghanaian government has been involved since the founding of the project through the Ghana Cocoa Board, the government agency charged with encouraging and championing the production of ethically sourced, high-quality cocoa in Ghana. CocoaLink has been so successful because of its popularity with farmers and its impact on farm productivity and income, and the Ghanaian government has now taken over all administrative responsibilities. Now, with full Cocoa Board and government support behind it, CocoaLink is the primary communication channel for ongoing outreach to cocoa farmers across the country, ensuring farmers have a continuous resource of farming tips, practical tools and information.