Bio-fuel production threatens Ghana’s agriculture – Director
Mr Cyril T. Quist, Brong Ahafo Regional Director of Agriculture, has said mining and biofuel production in the country posed a threat to agriculture.
He said efforts at promoting sustainable food systems were in danger if current practices where vast tracks of land were sold or leased for mining and production of biofuel were not stopped.
Speaking at a ceremony to mark World Food Day at Nsawkaw, he said this could pose a potential risk to food security thus exacerbating hunger and poverty because the practice only destroyed the ability of the soil to support crop production.
It also contributed to the destruction of water bodies vital for agricultural production and eventually affect food security and lead to hunger and poverty.
Mr Quist said because of weak food systems, land productivity had increased more than labour productivity in agriculture and this was inimical to growth in incomes.
However, he said, sustainable food systems would allow more attention to be given to market access and improving standards in local markets for food safety.
Mr Quist said improving food security would enable the poor to earn money and become more resilient which in turn would enable them to participate in economic activities and contribute to social development and needs, including health and education.
He said improving food security by investing in agricultural productivity, infrastructure, social protection and the opening of markets were vital to sustainable development.
On food production in the Region, Mr Quist said to promote sustainable food systems MoFA had promoted the development of commodity value chains, to increase incomes of farmers to reduce the level of poverty among cassava farmers.
Farmers under the Root and Tuber Improvement and Marketing Programme (RTIMP) are being supported with improved cassava planting materials and extension advice to increase cassava production.
Processing centres have been upgraded into Good Practice Centres (GPC) where issues of hygiene have been improved to result in quality output, while linkages have been established between producers and processors to create dedicated market for cassava producers.
Ms Christina Amarchey, Programme Manager of ActionAid Ghana (Brong Ahafo Region), expressed concern that more than three million children across the world died each year from not getting enough of the right food to eat, while many more children suffer from undernourishment, which affect their mental and physical developments.
She called on Women in Agricultural Development (WIAD) of MoFA to intensify their education on the importance of healthy balanced diets, and promote the production of more animal source foods.
How could I be in contact with Cyril T. Quist? Or maybe even the other Regions Directors of Agriculture?
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