Sumbrungu U/E), Nov. 8, GNA - Mr Mahami Salifu, the Upper East Regional Minister, warned sellers of unrecommended agro-chemicals to farmers to desist from the practice since it was a major cause of food poisoning.
He called on the Customs, Excise and Preventive Services (CEPS) and the Ministry of food and Agriculture to prevent the importation of banned chemicals into the country.
Mr Salifu was speaking at the Region's celebration of National Farmers' Day at Sumbrungu near Bolgatanga.
He also called on district assemblies to collaborate with personnel of the Ghana Health Service to ensure food safety. Mr Rockson Bukari, Bolgatanga Municipal Chief Executive, urged farmers in the area to apply modern farm techniques to increase food production towards poverty alleviation. He said: "let us take advantage of the President's Special Initiatives on Sorghum and Guinea fowl to bring positive change in our lives."
Mr Roy Ayariga, Regional Director of MOFA, commended the farmers for their contribution to the economy and urged them to use the occasion to reflect on how best they could improve upon their contributions to national development.
In all 12 farmers received regional awards, while 14 others received district awards.
Naba Adam Awini, a 59-year-old farmer and chief of Bokko in the Bawku East District, received the over all Regional best farmers award. He was given a corn mill, sewing machine, a full piece of wax print, six cutlasses, a pair of Wellington boots, a radio set and a certificate as his prize.
The Bolgatanga District Best Farmer award went to Akolbilla Andaama, who received a bullock plough, a bicycle, a piece of wax print, three cutlasses, a pair of wellington boots and a certificate as his prize.
Other award winners from various categories of farming that received prizes at both the district and regional levels included best rice farmers, best livestock farmers, best onion farmers, best soya bean farmers, best tomato farmer, best millet farmers, best groundnut farmer, best fisherman and best fire prevention group.