Members of the National Soya Value Chain Committee have asked the Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, to extend the success story of maize production under Planting for Food and Jobs to soya production, in the country.
The Group, made up of soya seed producers, input dealers, farmers, aggregators, processors, researchers, and mechanization operators, met with the Minister in Accra to discuss ways and means of increasing soya production.
The chairman of the Group, John Bello, noted that the Minister has established “an enviable record in producing enough maize on the local market,” and would like his attention to now also focus on boosting soya production.
However, he also appealed to the Minister to initiate steps to abolish the import of soya in order to encourage farmers while boosting its production, locally.
Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, on his part, welcomed the formation of the Group noting it as part of the solutions to addressing the problems of the poultry industry, in the country.
He said that soya and maize were the main ingredients of feed for the poultry industry and since Planting for Food and Jobs has solved the issue of maize, soya has become the crop of 2019.
The Minister identified harvesting as a major problem for soya farmers and pledged the Ministry will soon release very simple harvesters which have been brought in from Brazil and India.
He told them to be encouraged by the fact that the price of soya on the world market is double that of maize.
He also assured the group of his efforts and negotiations with local financial institutions such as the Ghana Commercial Bank to support farmers with special concessionary financial packages.
The Steering Committee of the Group is expected to be inaugurated soon by the Minister.