MEA Business Awards 2023

MEA | Business Awards 2023 32 Best Heirloom Seed Agriculture Company - West Africa Call to Nature Permaculture Ghana was established back in 2015, driven by a vision to aid in the growth, gathering, and protection of heirloom seeds, ensuring that not only are they shared with farmers across Ghana and Western Africa, but the entire world. Thanks to a robust network of associates at partner organisation Baker Creek, one of the largest distributors of heirloom seeds on the planet, Call to Nature can proudly boast the claim of being of one of the fastest-growing exporters of plant seeds across the whole of Africa, with its seeds all being traditional, grown organically, untreated, and never genetically modified. Founder and CEO Solomon Amuzu tells us more. s farmers first and foremost, the team are reliant on the seeds for their livelihoods, families, animals, and the thriving of the local community. To this end, the general philosophy of Solomon and the team is to honour the life of every species of seed, aware that everything in nature remains connected and plays an integral part in the maintenance of the overall ecosystem, with this also extending to the company’s staff and clients. Solomon explains, “it is all about working together towards accomplishing our collective goals”, something undertaken further through the team offering hands-on training to members of the public. While its commitment to the cause may be steadfast, when it comes to farming practices, the approach taken by the team is one that prizes evolution, with Solomon utilising the tools at his disposal, such as the internet, to understand and adopt the methods of those in other countries. He explains, “we stay connected online and keep growing our network of farmers, heirloom seed lovers, gardeners and hobbyists, organic and nonGMO advocates, and individuals that share the same vision and passion as us.” Having been in this industry for many years without such technologies, Solomon strives to never take them for granted. Aside from just technology, Solomon is determined to make the most of all of the opportunities that are available to him, pioneering innovative and unique new methods that focus on nature and ending food insecurity across many of Africa’s poorer countries. As Ghana continues along its path to becoming one of Africa’s fastest growing countries, the utilising of such tools has proven paramount in Call to Nature setting about achieving its mission, aided further by the fact that agriculture serves as approximately one-fifth of the country’s economy, with a series of new opportunities and developments having presented themselves in the realms of organic farming and agricultural processing. One such opportunity revolves around an ever-increasing amount of people partaking in urban farming activities, with vacant spaces akin to backyards, rooftops, and balconies being used in the cultivation of crops. On the back of this, ventures such as the Ghana Peri-urban Vegetables Value Chain Project have served to increase public awareness regarding the importance of farming. Conventional seed farming has been another trend that Solomon and his team have experienced increasing lately, and as Solomon tells us, “farmers are increasingly shifting away from the use of synthetic and chemical inputs owing to a growing demand for natural, organic produce and stringent regulatory and compliance requirements.” Embodying the natural has been an integral part of Call to Nature’s ethos since day one, and as a result, it has proven itself to be ahead of the curve time and again. There are other ways of equal importance adopted by the team that aid them in the success of their ventures, primarily the internal culture that has been fostered and is upheld by everyone. Eight key elements comprise this, with these spanning such areas as value creation, leveraging expertise, remaining wholly focused on the mission, adding two new items to its catalogue per year, as well as recognising and rewarding staff for their dedication and hard work. When it comes to plans for the rest of 2024, Solomon is praying that this year brings with it the necessary blessings to provide the company with the means to reach that next level. Goals for this year have formed a three-fold approach, whereby Call to Nature Permaculture Ghana is aiming to complete its seedbank, establish an on-site food recipe development system, and finally, manufacture a lab for seed testing. These plans are a far cry from the humble origins of Solomon Amuzu growing vegetables and raising livestock at 16 years old, representing him having achieved something remarkable with this tremendous endeavour. Contact: Solomon Amuzu Company: Call to Nature Permaculture Ghana Web Address: A