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05.06.2007 General News

MOFA to pay attention to the cultivation of some food crops

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Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) is to review the Medium Term Plans of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies.

Miss Salome Danso, Deputy Director of Policy, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Division (PPMED) of MOFA who announced this said, it was to enable them incorporate the Food and Agricultural Sector Development Policy (FASDEP) into their development agenda.

Ms Danso was speaking at the opening session of a day's Western Regional Consultative workshop organised by MOFA at Takoradi on Monday.

She said maize, yam, rice and cassava had been selected to be reproduced at national and ecological zones as part of the national food security programme.

Ms Danso explained that the focus on the four crops was to make them readily available during food crisis in the country.

She said the assemblies could in addition; intensify their efforts at other food crops, vegetables and cash crops well adapted in their respective areas.

Ms Danso said each assembly could select any two of the four crops and develop them to suit their areas.

She explained that FASDEP II was a policy to direct food and economic indicators of the country for future aid and assistance.

It would focus on commercialisation, income generation and poverty reduction.

Ms Danso said FASDEP II would enable Metropolitan, Municipal and District Managers of Agriculture to adequately utilise resources allocated to them unlike FASDEP I that focused on food production.

Mrs Lena Otoo, Assistant Director of Greater Accra Regional Office of MOFA said the review was to transform the agricultural sector from subsistence to commercial agriculture.

She said this could be enhanced when post harvest loses were reduced and processed for national use.

Mrs Otoo gave the assurance that smallholder farmers would not be ignored in the policy formulation.

Dr Benjamin Nyamadi, Deputy Director of MOFA said farm produce could be stabilised when strategic stocks of rice, and other staple crops were utilised extensively.

He said MOFA would develop farmer-based organisations and strengthen their capacity for improved marketing of their products.

Dr Nyamadi said under-exploited fisheries resources, landing sites, cooling systems and artisan fishing would be promoted.

He said small-scale irrigation schemes would be expanded and improved to ensure efficiency among operators.

Source: GNA

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