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Business News of Saturday, 21 March 2015

Source: GNA

Farmers to get free seedlings and fertilizer

The Government is offering 50 million free cocoa seedlings and bags of fertilizer to farmers to help improve their yield and income, Mr Mike Ofori Darko, District Chief Executive (DCE) for Ayensuano, said.

The need for sustaining cocoa production as a major contribution to wealth creation and poverty alleviation remains paramount, he said.

Mr Darko was addressing a farmers rally at Coaltar in the Eastern Region on Friday.

The participants were cocoa farmers drawn from Suhum, Teacher Mantey, Nsawam, Achiansah, Ntowkrom and Coaltar among other communities.

The DCE said since cocoa was the back bone of the economy, increased production would help accrue more funds to enable the Government to improve on country’s infrastructure, especially the road network and other social amenities.

“Throughout the world, the standards against which all cocoa is measured are those of Ghana cocoa, because the beans are reasonably free from living insects, broken beans and any other foreign matter,” he said.

Mr Ofori Darko said cocoa from Ghana continued to enjoy high premium on the world market.

Mr Samuel Gyimah Gyamfi, Eastern Regional Cocoa Manager, reiterated the need for farmers to register for the free hybrid cocoa seedlings and ammonia fertilizer.

He said the practice of an officer charging fees before supplying the items to farmers was illegal and unacceptable adding; “it would undermine the free allocation exercise”.

He said in the past Eastern Region was producing 47 per cent of the country’s cocoa and Suhum Cocoa District was the largest producer, but the trend had changed and, therefore, advised cocoa farmers to endeavour to work hard to regain the past glory.

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