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Business News of Tuesday, 24 February 2004

Source: GNA

Cashew production to get boost

Gomoa Lome (C/R), Feb. 24, GNA - The Ghana National Procurement Agency (GNPA) is to provide a special bonus package and credit facilities for cashew farmers to enable them expand and maintain their farms as a way of boosting production of the crop.

Mr John Wunu, Senior Manager, Exports, of the Ghana National Procurement Agency (GNPA) Limited, a cashew exporting company, announced this at a meeting of Gomoa Lome Cashew Growers Cooperative Society at Gomoa Lome in the Gomoa district.

He said a Cashew Development Project had been set up to assist farmers and that Agriculture Extension Agents to be known as Commodity Officers and Agricultural Development Bank Credit officers would be attached to each group of farmers to offer technical and financial assistance to them.

Mr Wunu advised farmers who had decided to destroy their cashew farms for the lack of market for the produce to rescind their decision. He announced that the GNPA was negotiating with a foreign company to establish cashew-processing factory in the country.

Miss Joyce Aidoo, Gomoa District Chief Executive (DCE), commended the farmers on their decision to venture into cash crop production as a way of reducing poverty in the area.

She assured the farmers of the assembly's material and financial support in expanding their farms.

Mr Francis Nutakor, District Director of Agriculture, urged them to take advantage of the amenities being offered by the GNPA to expand and maintain their farms to boost the production of the crop. Mr Nutakor advised the farmers to ensure that their produce was of high quality, adding that Ghana was noted for exporting high quality cocoa and that it was imperative that they maintained that record in cashew production too.

Miss Comfort Nketsiah, Assistant Manager, Exports, also of the GNPA cautioned the farmers against diversion of monies meant for the purchase and development of cashew to other uses. Nana Krampah Dadzie VIII, chief of Gomoa Adom and chairman of the society appealed to the GNPA to release funds early to meet the main crop season.