Ghana’s farmers, fisherman plan on food security
The Ghana National Association of Farmers and Fishermen (GNAFF) has devised a strategy to improve and sustain the country’s food stock to ensure food security in the country.
According to the association, “the strategy could lead to an agriculture-led socioeconomic development of Ghana” and has, therefore, appealed to the government for assistance in its implementation.
The Executive Secretary of GNAFF, Mr Charles K. Annan, who made this known in an interview with the Daily Graphic, said the strategy covered the crop, animal and fisheries sectors.
In the crop production sector, for example, he cited the establishment of serviced agricultural land at community levels, where land would be allotted to smallholder farmers for the cultivation of maize, rice, groundnuts, sorghum, cowpea and soybean.
“For the animal production sector, we intend to establish out-grower schemes for broiler, egg and ruminant production,” he stated, and added that for the fisheries sector, they would ensure the establishment of out-grower fish farming units for freshwater fish and shellfish.
These activities, he said, were based on a “service provision” approach, whereby service providers would make available to farmers and fisherfolks a wide range of services that would enable farmers and fisherfolks to access technologies that would enhance agricultural production.
“The use of service providers creates a ‘multiplier effect’ in the rapid transfer of technologies. This is because it will be possible to engage professional agriculturists to directly undertake or supervise the provision of on-farm services and fisheries production services,” he added.
That, Mr Annan noted, also meant that farmers and fishermen would be able to have the benefits of technologies utilised in precision farming systems and gradually accumulate knowledge for better management.
“For example, in crop farming, Precision Farming Systems (PFS) field activities would produce valuable field and management information. Farmers can thus accumulate knowledge about their farms and production systems to achieve better management,” he indicated.
PFS, he said, was a system where information technology was used to collect, process and analyse multi-source data for decision-making.
Mr Annan acknowledged the importance of the strategy, which he said improved a farmer’s management skills through the accumulation of data and information.
Some of the advantages of this strategy, he said, contributed to an overall yield increase, reduced production costs, better decision-making in agricultural management, and reduced environmental impact through timely application of agro-chemicals at an accurate rate to reduce environmental pollution.
With adequate assistance from the government, he said PFS’s field activities could produce valuable field and management information where the data would be stored in tools and computers.
“Farmers can thus accumulate knowledge about their farms and production systems to achieve better management to ensure food security in the country,” he said.
Source: Daily Graphic