NARC is one of the six centers of Biotechnology and Nuclear Agriculture Research Institute (BNARI) in Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC). The Centre is mandated to improve crop production by using nuclear techniques and related tools for the development of market oriented mutants to support food, pharmaceutical and industrial demands in the country. NARC is endowed with exceptional Plant Breeders who are improving crop production through the use of mutation breeding. That is peaceful application of nuclear and related tools for development of market oriented mutants to support food, pharmaceutical and industrial demands in the country.

NARC has a staff strength of 14. Staff is made up of three (3) Research Scientists at post, one (1) Technical Staff, one (1) Technical Assistant/Technician, six (6) Farm Supervisors/ Farm overseers, one (1) Administrative Assistant and two (2) staff on study leave with pay /permission to study/sandwich PhD programme. The collective research of NARC has resulted in improving crops for better yield, nutrition and disease resistance. Due to collaborative research of NARC with UCC, five proposed cassava varieties were released for farmers to cultivate in Ghana and has been accepted for release to farmers.


To be Ghana’s leading public institution that provides solutions to challenges in agriculture, health, and industry through the exploration and exploitation of scientific knowledge in biotechnology and nuclear science.


To carry out research and development activities on safe applications and transfer these technologies to end users in order to enhance agricultural productivity, health delivery, and industrialization.

In pursuit and these, BNARI will build strategic alliances and partnership with national, regional and international bodies to assist Ghana fulfil her obligations on the safe applications of biotechnology and nuclear science.


NARC is mandated to improve crops using mutagenesis through the peaceful application of nuclear and related tools for development of market oriented mutants to support food, pharmaceutical and industrial demands in the country.

Research Activities

The main technology employed at NARC is mutation breeding, which is a useful genetic improvement tool that has been in use for over eight (8) decades. Mutation induction has become a proven way of creating variation within a crop variety. It offers the possibility of inducing desired attributes that either cannot be found in nature or have been lost during evolution. When no gene for resistance to a particular disease, or tolerance to stress is available in a gene pool, plant breeders have no obvious alternative than using mutagenesis approach to expand genetic diversity. Some research activities at the Centre include:


  1. Oil Palm Improvement

Given the importance of oil palm and how much potential it has to earn foreign exchange and augment farmers’ incomes, the Centre ventured into development of semi-dwarf and drought tolerant oil palm genotypes with better oil quality and high yielding attributes.

Oil palm takes between 2-5 years and attains peak productivity between 20-35 years though it may live long as 200 years. At the height of its productivity, the palm grows too tall and this hinders easy harvesting of the ripped fruits or branches. Fruits harvested from tall trees get bruised on falling to the ground. Extracting palm oil from bruised fruits affects the oil quality. Currently, oil palm production is restricted to the rainforests and other regions with high rainfall.

 NARC therefore ventured into the studies of developing semi-dwarf varieties with reduced internode elongation per year. Furthermore, the development of drought tolerant oil palm trees to be cultivated in regions with irregular and low rainfall.

The studies have been able to produce putative semi-dwarf varieties which are being evaluated on the field. M2 populations of drought tolerant oil palm trees are being screened on the field.


It is hoped that semi-dwarf and drought tolerant oil palm trees will be developed to solve the problem of harvesting of tall trees and drought tolerant varieties.


These genotypes are high-yielding hybrid/dwarf varieties.



  1. Cassava Improvement

Cassava is a major staple food and grown in almost every African country. NARC has been able to improve cassava production through a collaboration between the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission and University of Cape Coast. This has resulted in the release of five cassava varieties in 2019. The varieties released included three yellow-fleshed high carotenoid content varieties (Nyonku agbeli, Kponu agbeli and Tetteh bankye) and two white-fleshed (Fufuohene, and Ampesihemaa) varieties.


These new varieties are being multiplied on the field at various centres for distribution to farmers to increase the availability of planting materials. Adoption of these improved varieties would contribute more effectively towards food and nutrition security as well as poverty reduction. The center is also breeding for elite carotenoid cassava varieties which is targeted at eliminating hidden hunger as such varieties have been proven to improve the nutritional value of cassava. High yielding and nutritious crop varieties are based on a comprehensive approach of tackling food insecurity and malnutrition while promoting sustainable agriculture. This is an important step to achieving zero hunger and ushering in a new era of sustainable development. When people had three square meals to eat and sell the surplus, they would get much needed income and this is dedicated to sustainable development goal 1: “SDG1 No poverty”.



  1. Development and improvement of tomato varieties

Tomato production in Ghana is constrained by a number of factors such as incidences of diseases (especially Tomato Yellow Leaf Curl Virus Disease), poor fruit quality, varieties with short shelf lives, inability to meet demand due to fewer people involved in production, and poor adaptation to abiotic factors (especially drought and saline soils).


Tomato varieties grown in Ghana are low yielding, susceptible to pests and diseases and low in nutrient composition. NARC as a research centre has therefore started to solve such problems through the improvement of tomato varieties through mutation breeding. Through mutation breeding wild varieties of tomato was irradiated and crossed with local and exotic varieties. This project has resulted in the development of  tomato varieties which are resistant /tolerant to the Tomato Yellow Leaf Curl (TYLC) disease, hardy, has longer shelf life, fleshy, higher lycopene content and possess high total soluble solids, lower Ph and high yielding. The lines developed are currently to be grown at various ecological zones before being released upon approval by the Varietal Release Committee.


The impact of climate change has caused most water bodies to either dry out completely or recede, and this has increased the cost of production significantly. Tomato accessions developed through mutation breeding have been selected and being tested alongside some local landraces and imported varieties to ascertain their tolerance to saline soils. This work aims to produce farmer desired varieties that are tolerant to saline conditions.

Commercialization Activities

  1. NARC is involved in the growing and selling of okro, pepper, mango, cassava, carrot and other vegetables to improve the income generating activities of BNARI.


The centre has been involved in training of students.


NARC in collaboration with UCC have officially released five new cassava varieties through the Ministry of Food and Agriculture. Three of these varieties have high pro-vitamin A content for prevention of night blindness and miscarriages in pregnant women. The remaining two have very high dry matter, yield and resistance to the devastating cassava mosaic virus disease. Planting materials are now available for farmers.


  1. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Austria
  2. Public and Private Universities- University of Cape Coast
  3. Research Institutions
  4. Farmer Associations (name them)


The Centre Manager,

Nuclear Agriculture Research Centre (NARC)


P.O. Box LG 80, Legon-Accra, Ghana



NARC is close to BNARI Directorate which is within the premises of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC). GAEC is about 6 km off the main Legon-Madina road and it is between the Haatso and Kwabenya towns.

Digital Address/GPS: GE-257-A379