19.03.2004 Regional News

Workshop on sustainable agriculture opens at Techiman

19.03.2004 LISTEN

Techiman (B/A), March 19, GNA - A five day workshop on Development, Education and Leadership Services for 23 participants from Community Based Organisations (CBOs) of Ecumenical Association for Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development (ECASARD) in Brong Ahafo has opened in Techiman.

The workshop is aimed at equipping the participants with techniques in marketing and business planning with the objective of projecting good prices for farmers' produce as well as to let them understand trading process involved in marketing.

Topics to be dealt with at the workshop include strategic business and marketing planning, awareness on HIV/AIDS, logistical framework, and participatory action planning.

Opening the workshop, Nana Kwaw Adams, National Chairman of ECASARD said it had become necessary to register all those operating the framework of ECASARD for easy identification and to know the areas and urged members to identify themselves as supplementary foreign donors. Nana Adams emphasized the need for ECASARD members to take the voters registration exercise seriously in order to exercise their franchise.

He expressed gratitude to members for their support towards his election as the National Chairman and called for their co-operation to promote the growth of ECASARD.

Mr. Igno Stung, counterpart National Coordinator for ECASARD said the fourth phase of the programme would focus on planning, monitoring and evaluation.

He said many opportunities awaited members of ECASARD and asked them to abide by the tenets so that they could improve their output. Mr. John Manu, Techiman Municipal Director of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture gave assurance that the Ministry would continue to strengthen partnership with farming groups that used organic manure. He noted that the misapplication of agro-chemicals had brought untold hardships to farmers, saying the Ministry would support ECASARD towards the promotion of the use of organic manure.

Mr. Charles Ampofo, Brong Ahafo Regional Coordinator of ECASARD in a welcoming address said the Association would this year intensify its education on organic farming methods by setting up Participatory Technology Development (PTO).

He said a follow-up to a demonstration farm at Tanoso, near Techiman, showed that the programme had yielded fruitful results and most farmers had shifted from conventional to organic farming.

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