Cultivate crops that suit market demands

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Mr Nicholas Neequaye, Director of the Agribusiness Unit of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), has advised farmers to increase the marketability of their produce by cultivating food crops with high market demands.

He said it was important that farmers assessed the market and demand trends of consumers to cultivate such crops or foodstuffs in high demand to boost their incomes and prevent post-harvest losses.

Mr Neequaye gave the advice during the opening of a training workshop in Tamale on Tuesday for about 200 nucleus farmers, who comprised beneficiaries of the Ghana Commercial Agriculture Project (GCAP) grants and some members of the National Farmers and Fishers Award Winners Association of Ghana (NFFAWAG).

The three-day event was organized by the Agribusiness Unit of MoFA with sponsorship from GCAP to build the capacity of participants drawn from the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions, in areas covering book keeping, accounting, finance, quality standards, environmental/social safeguards and marketing to enhance their (farmers) operations.

The GCAP, which is being implemented in the regions under the Savanna Accelerated Development Authority (SADA), seeks to improve agricultural production to ensure food security.

The training is also to address the challenges of finding ready market for their food crops, which has been a major concern to most farmers.

After the training, the expectation is that the nucleus farmers would become trainers and change agents to provide technical advice to out-growers about planting, fertilizer application, and record keeping amongst others to improve their businesses.

He urged farmers to be business-minded and keep records of their operations to improve revenue.

Mr Bloomfield Crosby Attipoe, Senior Rural Infrastructure Engineer of GCAP urged farmers to take farming as serious business by applying business principles to make the best productive use of their farm lands.

Mr Attipoe urged participants to internalize whatever they learnt from the training to transform their business and that of out-growers to improve agricultural production.

Mr Davies Korboe, National Chairman of NFFAWAG said the training would expose participants to bad farming practices, post-harvest losses and other troubling agricultural issues.

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