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Business News of Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Source: GNA

Food farmers at Konkrompe address challenges

A workshop on research findings to address challenges facing food farmers at New Konkrompe in the Amantin-Atebubu district in the Brong Ahafo Region has ended.

The workshop formed part of an advocacy project being undertaken by New Konkrompe Odo Co-operative Food Farming and Marketing Society Limited, to address the problem of the lack of a storage facility and standardized pricing system for their maize crop, especially during bumper harvest.

BUSAC Fund provided funding for the workshop, which was attended by private sector organizations, including the World Vision, Amantin-Kasei community bank and the Yepra Rural Bank.

The organisations pledged to help address the storage problem confronting the farmers and asked the association to submit proposals with cost for consideration and support.

The farmers hoped that when the challenge of a storage facility was addressed it would help reduce or eradicate the perennial post harvest losses that they have been experiencing.

“We are forced to sell our goods during bumper harvest at “give-away” prices,” leading to loss of capital,” Mr. Djan Yeboah Sulemana, the Chairman of the society indicated.

Mr. George Akuamah, Secrertary of the society, noted that the problem of post harvest losses due to factors such as storage and poor marketing system had been with the society and other farmers in the area for a long time now.

“Though several interventions have been undertaken, we are still unsuccessful and this had affected our incomes and profits,” he stressed.

He hoped that with funding support from BUSAC, the number of activities the society had undertaken including advocacy, sensitization and financial management training would help to address the challenges confronting them.

“The purpose of this stakeholders workshop is to let all stakeholders come together to discuss the results of the research and provide possible solutions and suggestions to the various challenges, including the marketing of our products,” the secretary said.

Mr. Akuamah indicated that with all the challenges, the society would strive to encourage and improve modern methods of farming in the area to increase productivity.

The research findings recommended to the district assembly and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) that the issue of transportation should be their concern to support farmers to cart their produce during harvest to check the losses.