Regional News of Saturday, 19 July 2014
Source: Graphic Online
An awards ceremony has been held to honour institutions and organisations that have consistently sponsored the hosting of the National Farmers Day. Jointly organised by the Ministries of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) or Fisheries and Aquaculture Development (MOFAD), the companies which had offered help in cash or in kind totalling GH¢20,000 or more received mementoes while others were given certificates in the categories of platinum, gold, silver or bronze for their immense support to the annual event.
Some of the awardees were the Agricultural Development Bank, Stanbic Bank, Bank of Ghana, CFAO, Cocobod, Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Japan Motors, Guinness Ghana, Accra Brewery Limited, Free Zone Authority, Amajaro and Weinco.
The event was used to launch the 2014 National Farmers Day slated for December 5, 2014 and to appeal for sponsorship for this year’s celebrations. This year’s National Farmers Day, which will be the 30th edition, will be on the theme “Eat what we grow”.
At the ceremony, the Minister of MOFA, Mr Fiifi Fiavi Kwetey, commended all organisations and institutions that had consistently donated towards the celebration. “Over the years the two ministries’ efforts to honour hard-working farmers and fishermen could not have been possible without the support of some organisations and institutions that have consistently taken upon themselves to donate in kind or in cash to augment the efforts of the government,” he stated.
He further appealed to corporate institutions and organisations to support this year’s Framers Day celebration to motivate farmers and fishers to ensure food security, high income and create job opportunities. The Deputy Minister of MOFAD, Mrs Benita Sena Okity-Duah, said the ministry was pursuing measures to bridge the gap between fish production and its consumption.
She explained that Ghana was among the highest fish-consuming countries in the world with per capita consumption of between 23 and 25 kilogrammes while the world average was 13 kg. However, she said the challenge was that the demand for fish was not met, adding that local production was able to meet 50-per cent of the total demand of 968,000 metric tonnes for fish in 2013.
Mrs Okity-Duah said the ministry had put in place measures such as the Aquaculture Development plan covering a five-year period (2013-2018) that sought to improve production, marketing, environmental sustainability and social acceptability of fish farm as a viable business enterprise. She added that the Fisheries Enforcement Unit was also working to enforce the fisheries laws to ensure sustainability of fish resources.