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General News of Sunday, 30 June 2019


Atomic Energy Commission adapts technologies to boost Agriculture production

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The Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) has adopted new technologies to help improve the Agricultural systems to boost the economy.

The technologies include Radiation, Sterile Insects Techniques, Tissue Culture and Mutation Breeding.

This was disclosed at a forum organised by the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI) in Accra to advocate for the modernisation of the Agriculture sector with technology in producing good and quality seeds.

The forum was also to provide new planting varieties for farmers to be introduced to new technologies to enable them to accelerate their farming activities.

The new technologies would enable farmers to produce crops at larger quantities and protect them from being destroyed.

Dr Michael Osae, the Deputy Director of Biotechnology and Nuclear Agriculture Research Institute, GAEC, who made the disclosure said as the population increased, food demand, would also increase.

He said the technologies were introduced to determine the quality of the soil before applying fertilizers to it to improve the production of crops.

The introduction of the new technologies, he said, would help those in the agricultural sector to harvest more produces with ease.

Dr Osae said the radiation worked on plants by damaging the enzymes that caused crops to die off and thereby extending the life shelve of the crops.

“Excess radiation has effects on the crops and could damage it if not treated with proper care,” he said.

He disclosed that about 30 to 85 per cent of fruits were damaged by fruit flies, therefore, sterile insects techniques were employed to reduce pest population on crops and fruits.

The mutation breeding variety enabled farmers to select the good crops from the bad ones, he said, adding that tissue culture was mostly used on crops such as cassava, sweet potato, pineapple, sugar cane and plantain.

Dr Osae explained that other machines such as the solar dryers were used to convert tomatoes into powder and subsequently into tomato puree.

Organic composer machine, he said, was also used to convert waste into organic fertilizers to improve the quality of the soil, adding that, Isotope machines were also used to determine the number of nutrients and nitrogen in the soil before production.

Ms Levina Owusu, the Chief Director of the MESTI commended the GAEC for its effort in helping to develop the Agricultural sector to promote socio-economic development.

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