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11.08.2004 General News

Oranges rot for lack of market

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Sunyani, Aug 11, GNA - About 60 per cent of oranges harvested each year in the Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abirem District of the Central Region get rotten due to lack of market.

Nana Afrei Twako, Chief of Abreshia, near Elmina said, this has created ''a field day for buyers from Cote D'Ivoire to deceive and cheat the farmers.''

He said in a statement in Sunyani on Wednesday that the buyers sometimes abscond with truckloads of oranges and are never heard of or seen again.

"Since orange farming is the only source of livelihood for the people in the area, the youth have been compelled to migrate to the cities in search of non-existent jobs, because of the lack of market for the produce."

Nana Afrei appealed to the Ministries of Food and Agriculture, Trade and Industry and the Presidential Special Initiatives and other organizations to help establish small-scale agro-processing industries in the area to forestall the situation.

"Currently, there are more than 250 hectares of orange farms in the area and the farmers are ready to expand their farms for increased production," he said.

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