12.05.2005 Regional News

Three districts in Eastern Region to participate in rice project

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Kade (E/R), May 12, GNA - Three districts in the Eastern Region have been selected out of 27 districts in five regions to benefit from the Inland Valleys Rice Development Project (IVRDP).

The districts include Kwaebibrem, Birim South and Birim North. A Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) source told the Ghana News Agency at Kade on Wednesday that, a total of 650 hectares are to be developed and put under the improved methods of rice cultivation. The source described the project as one meant to immediately increase the production of rice to improve the country's grain production and food security.

It said a lot of emphasis was being put on the formation and strengthening of Farmer-Based Organisations (FBOs), saying that under the IVRP, resources would be channelled through them.

The source said an FBOs Development Fund had been set up for capacity building of the groups, adding that there was a wider coverage when technologies were disseminated through groups rather than individuals.

It noted that, strong and well-informed FBOs could easily be assisted to identify their agricultural constraints and needs as well as plan for short and medium term activities to meet their needs or overcome their constraints.

The FBOs could also obtain technical as well as general information to support production, processing and marketing of agricultural commodities selected by farmers.

The source, therefore, called on farmers to consider the FBO concept and give maximum co-operation to agricultural extension officers and co-operative officers in facilitating group formation in their various areas.

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