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28.09.2005 General News

Livestock production in Upper West Region improves

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Tumu, Sept 28, GNA - Livestock production in the Upper West Region improved tremendously between 2000 and 2004 through the IFAD sponsored Upper West Agricultural Development Project (UWADEP). Under the project, poultry production increased by 41 per cent, pigs and goats production by 20 per cent, sheep by 19 per cent and cattle by 11.3 per cent.

These were announced by Mr. George Hikah Benson, Deputy Upper West Regional Minister at a three- day Capacity Building workshop for Agricultural Officers at Tumu in the Sissala East District. The workshop organized by the International Centre for Enterprise and Sustainable Development (ICED) was sponsored by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) through the farmer project based in Tamale.

Participants were taken through methods and strategies in food security, resource requirement to enhance food security. Mr Benson said poultry production in 2000 was 1,152,127 birds and this increased to 3,032,300 birds in 2004 while goats production increased from 627,800 to 1,148,896 within the same period. He said 19 dams had been rehabilitated for irrigation to be used by 4,434 farmers during the dry season.

Mr. Benson commended ICED for organizing the workshop and called on other non-governmental organizations to continue to enlighten farmers on the new methods of farming to increase food production.

On food crop production, Mr Benson said there was an improvement and plans were far advanced to focus on the region's comparative advantage in millet, sorghum, cashew and sheanut production in the country. Professor Emmanuel K. Boon of ICED, said more workshops would be organized to ensure adequate food security in the region.

However, he appealed to the farmers to constantly keep in touch with Extension officers for new methods in farming to increase production.

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