Purdeu University of Technology in the United States of America in collaboration with the World Vision International, a Non-Governmental Organization has launched a storage project for cowpea in Ghana without the use of chemicals.
The project, dubbed Purdue Improved Cowpea Storage (PICS) facility, is funded by the Bill and Belinda Gates Foundation of the USA and would last for five years.
The main partners for the implementation of the project include the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), farmers and traders of the country.
Mr Basilio Okello, National Director for World Vision International, announced this in an address read on his behalf by Dr John Adu Kumi, National Coordinator of the PICS project at a ceremony at Nkoranza.
The ceremony dubbeb “Open the Bag,” brought to light how cowpea had been stored in a special manufactured bag recommended by the PICS for about five months without any infestation.
Mr Okello disclosed that the project had successfully been carried out in countries such as Mali, Niger, Burkina-Faso, Cameroon and Nigeria, adding that the storage system had encouraged cowpea farmers to enjoy good market for their produce.
He informed participants that Polytanks Manufacturing Company in Accra had been producing the PICS bags in such a way that when the bags were filled with the cowpea and tied, “they create an anaerobic condition for the crop to remain fresh and neat until they are opened for use”.
In a joint statement, the Ashanti Regional Director of MOFA, Mr William Boakye-Acheampong and his counterpart in the Brong-Ahafo Region, Mr Emmanuel Asante-Krobea, said the new technology was very effective and urged farmers to embrace and patronize it.