Western Regional Best farmer calls for reduced interest on loans

Mr. Issa Ouedraogo, Managing Director of B-BOVID, an agro-business within the Western Region has observed that the high interest rates on loans continue to be a bane to the growth of agriculture in the country.    

He explained that interest on agricultural loans which ranged between 15 to 30 percent was too high and did not encourage individuals particularly young entrepreneurs who have the love for the sector to venture into agriculture.
Mr. Ouedraogo, who won the Regional Best Farmer category twice in the Western Region told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that, “growing agriculture was paramount to the very survival of the state… this is why I believe successive governments must set up a scheme or even go in for a bond to support small holder as well as large scale farmers like myself to continue to feed the country”.
The B-BOVID farm according to Him, operated a socially inclusive model which demonstrated that agriculture in whichever form could be lucrative, reduce poverty and create jobs for the teeming unemployed youths in the country.
“The farmer must not be a poor person anyway, but here in Ghana, the toil of the average farmer is wasted at the end of the day and some middle men make all the money at their expense”.
The Managing Director of B-BOVID was in November 25, this year awarded the overall Chamber Business man for the year 2016 and the Innovative Agro Business Company by the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce in its maiden awards.
The award winning farmer lauded the introduction of the planting for food and jobs concept being implemented by the government adding, “This is a superb idea but it should go back to the basics and link farmers to buyers, sellers and even export through appropriate technology and education”.
He pointed out in a country, which 65 per cent were farmers with many of them being illiterate, we need not leave them on the island to fend for themselves,  but must educate them properly on when to call the veterinary officers, how well to read the weather, where to find buyers and storage facilities to make them earn a good living from their labour”.
According to him, the B-BOVID has 670 acres of farm land for various agricultural production out of which 270 acres have been dedicated to organic vegetable farming with 350 out growers, irrigation facilities and post-harvest warehouse aside a large tract of ‘garden of Eden’ which is mainly dedicated to fruits of all types.
Additionally, the oil palm plantation of the company has between 2000 out growers with plans to increase the number to 5000 in which the company would supply seedlings and transportation.
The Managing Director of B-BOVID anticipate for a better business relationship with the international market and believed that  the right partnership and investment in the company would go a long way to ensure the company’s sustainability, food security and general economic well-being of its out growers and the business catchment area.

Source: GNA

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