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26.07.2004 General News

We Are Better Off – 2002 Best Cocoa Farmer

By GHANA HIGH COMMISSION, LONDON

Opanin Kwabena Danso, the year 2002 Best Cocoa Farmer has stated that Ghanaian Cocoa farmers were now reaping the fruits of their hard-work and thanked the NPP Government for making their lives considerably comfortable.

Speaking during a courtesy call by a delegation of cocoa farmers/ officials on Mr. Isaac Osei, Ghana's High Commissioner to UK after attending the recent Royal Agricultural Show in Stoneleigh, Coventry, Opanin Danso, described as unprecented the attention being given by Government to the improvement of the lot of cocoa farmers.

He added that the generous producer prices coupled with technical support from field officers had galvanised them to increase production.

'The life of a cocoa farmer under the NPP administration has changed for the better compared to previous years', he said. Opanin Danso stressed that the generous incentives being given to farmers was a practical demonstration to them that they and the Government were equal partners in development.

Present at the meeting were Mr. Kwabena Baah-Duodu, Deputy High Commissioner, Daasebre Akuamoah Boateng, Omanhene of Kwahuman and Chairman of the COCOBOD, and Madam Abena Maaboa, 2003 Best Cocoa Farmer.

Others included Mr. Chris Awuah, Public Affairs Manager of Cococbod and Mr. Jacob Ofosu-Koree, Manager of the Ghana Cocoa Marketing Company (UK) Ltd.

Madam Maaboa associated herself with the comments made by Opanin Danso and expressed her appreciation to the Government for giving recognition to their efforts.

On the visit to the Royal Agricultural Show, the two said the trip had been an eye opener and would galvanise them to bring what they had learnt to good use.

Daasebre Akuamoa Boateng observed that he was encouraged by the performance of cocoa farmers within the past three years and expressed the hope that farmers would not relax in their efforts.

Mr. Isaac Osei thanked the farmers for their comments and added that Government felt encouraged that its efforts had been appreciated not only by cocoa farmers but all farmers in the country.

He said one of the NPP Government's top priorities was to modernise agriculture through specifically targeted interventions including price incentives for cocoa farmers, irrigation schemes, increased extension and technical support and market intelligence. These interventions would be vigorously pursued to ensure self- sufficiency in food production and marketing of surplus produce to the sub-region.

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