EU LEAN Project Transforms Livelihoods with Mushroom Farming

A beneficiary watering his mushroom compost

In a remarkable turn of events, farmers in the Transition landscape of Ghana, who chose mushroom farming as part of the European Union-funded Landscapes and Environmental Agility across the Nation (EU LEAN ) project’s additional livelihood initiative, are experiencing a bountiful harvest barely three months after getting started. These enthusiastic farmers recently showcased their flourishing mushroom farms and impressive yields during a routine visit by EcoCare Ghana staff and Landscape Management Board members.

Sprouted Mushroom ready for harvesting

Madam Theresah Benewaa, one of the beneficiaries from the Nkwaeso Community in the Techiman Municipal Assembly, expressed her profound gratitude for the training received from EcoCare Ghana and the startup funding provided to commence mushroom production. With a beaming smile, she stated, “I can harvest about 150 Ghana Cedis worth of mushrooms every day and sell them within a few hours. There is a soaring demand for mushrooms in our community. I intend to expand my farm and pass on my knowledge about mushroom farming to other women in this community. I am deeply thankful for the training and support from the EU LEAN Project. Now, I realise I can diversify my income streams beyond traditional food crop farming, which was becoming less profitable due to climate change. Thanks to my mushroom farm, I can now pay my children’s school fees and support my family without waiting for the harvest season.”

As part of EcoCare Ghana’s commitment to enhancing climate resilience among farmers in the Transition Landscape and alleviating poverty, approximately 60 individuals from three districts – Techiman Municipal, Offinso Municipal, and Offinso North District Assemblies – were selected and trained in various additional livelihood options in June 2023 under the EU-funded LEAN Project. They were trained and given start-up capital in additional livelihood including, Beekeeping, snail rearing and Animal Husbandry..

Speaking about the remarkable success of these additional livelihood options, The LMB Chairman, Mr. Gyau Preprah, highlighted the high mushroom yields and surging demand within the districts, which are serving as potent motivators for the Landscape Management Board to consider expanding production and even venturing into the production of compost to supply to farmers. He commended the beneficiaries for their diligent efforts in taking the training seriously and making the most of their startup kits. He also encouraged other beneficiaries to commit similarly to ensure their ventures yield maximum profits.

LMB members with Staff of EcoCare Ghana and some beneficiaries

The EU LEAN Project is a four-year initiative with a multifaceted mission: to conserve biodiversity, enhance climate resilience, and reduce emissions resulting from land-use changes in Ghana’s savannah, high forest, and transition zones, while simultaneously striving to improve the livelihoods of local farmers. This impactful project is being executed by a consortium of partners comprising  EcoCare Ghana and Tropenbos Ghana in the Transition, Rainforest Alliance in the High Forest Zone and World Vision Ghana in the Savannah Landscape,

The success stories emerging from the mushroom farming component of the EU LEAN Project underscore the positive impact that strategic interventions can have on the lives of rural communities. It serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for others, highlighting the transformative potential of sustainable agriculture and the need for Civil Societies and the Private sector to invest in rural communities to reshape livelihoods and foster resilience in the face of climate change. As the project continues to unfold, it is poised to usher in a brighter future for countless individuals and communities in the Transition Landscape of Ghana and the other Landscapes across the nation.