Small holder farmers asked to perceive farming as business venture
Mr Solomon Tetteh Amartey, President of Ghana Agri-Input Dealers Association, has appealed to small holder farmers to perceive farming as a planned business activity to boost production and reduce poverty.
“It is very important for farmers to move away from the subsistence to commercial farming and this can only be successful through effective preparations before, during and after the farming season on what type of crops to plant, farm input to be used and storage”, he said.
Mr Amartey said this at the opening of the 2nd Northern Ghana Pre-season Planning and Networking Forum in Tamale which was dubbed, “Quality Inputs, Better Yields, More Profit”.
The forum which attracted about 800 farmers, input dealers, agric companies and aggregators’ nationwide was jointly organized by USAID-ADVANCE and International Fertilizer Development Center.
As part of the meeting, participants would be schooled on topics including how small holder famers could assess financial support, seed industry regulations and practice, financing for export agricultural development as well as improving yields.
Mr Amartey said one of the challenges in the agriculture value chain was that farmers had low yield due to the outmoded approach to cropping.
Mr Peter Trenchard, Director of Economic Growth Department of the USAID, said technology advancement in the field of information and communication technologies was important to the countries agriculture business development.
“The current innovation being offered by the communication service providers such as mobile money system when adopted can help provide a sustainable long time solution to financial management for farmers”, he said.
Mr Gilbert Iddi, Chief Executuve Officer of the Savanna Accelerated Authority (SADA), said his outfit had introduced a new hybrid maize variety which had proven to be more productive.
He said the new variety was most likely to increase yields from the current 1.9 tons per hectare to 5.0 tons per hectare and the project was most likely to meet its target and would consider expanding it to include more farmers.
Mr Iddi called on farmers to adopt such certified seeds to increase yield and contribute to government efforts towards ensuring food security in the country.