…says girls have key function underneath PFJ II
The Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr. Bryan Acheampong, has lauded Charity Akortia for rising winner of the 2023 National Best Farmer awards.
Ms. Akortia, a 57-year-old girl from Agona West municipality within the Central Region, was topped National Best Farmer for 2023 in the course of the awards evening’s 39th version held in Tarkwa, Western Region. For profitable the general prize, she acquired a money prize of GH¢1million sponsored by the Agriculture Development Bank.
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Theophilus Ezenrane Ackah from the Western Region was adjudged first runner-up. He took dwelling a excessive horsepower tractor-head, trailer, a set of implements and a increase sprayer, sponsored by Ghana Exim Bank.
The second runner-up spot went to Kwaku Yeboah Asumah from Bono East Region. He went dwelling with an MF tractor-head, trailer and set of implements, sponsored by Stanbic Bank.
The awardees have been honoured on the thirty ninth National Farmers Day Celebration Awards Night, held on the University of Mines and Technology Auditorium at Tarkwa within the Western Region on Friday evening.
The minister indicated that ladies play a key function underneath PFJ 2.0, as they comprise 1 / 4 of the world’s inhabitants and play an integral function in world meals manufacturing.
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The final time a lady emerged as nationwide farmer was in 2024, when a 75-year-old Madam Afua Frimponmaa received the National Best Farmer Awards.
The female and male distinction displays the gender hole in agricultural sector participation, together with farmers and different worth chain actors. Despite girls’s essential function, they not often have equal entry to alternatives in agriculture. They even have little say, if any, in decision-making round family spending and the land they should domesticate, Dr. Bryan lamented
“It is in this connection that President Akuffo-Addo and I led an engagement with the National House of Chiefs two months ago, to appeal for the release of arable lands for production,” he stated.
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Dr. Bryan indicated that underneath his management, “Agriculture cannot continue to be business as usual if we want to achieve a sustainable and resilient food system that assures food security in the face of future shocks”.
Ghana’s agriculture sector is characterised by low productiveness, with many farmers attaining lower than 60 p.c of the potential crop yields. “Post-harvest losses of about 10 percent to as high as 70 percent in the agriculture sector is unacceptable,” Dr. Acheampong stated.
Against this background, he stated, authorities is main a technique to alter issues to better-enable farmers to get desired outcomes from their exhausting work. He indicated that ladies have a key function to play within the sector, particularly with the approaching roll-out of social agriculture interventions that help rural girls to catch up when it comes to manufacturing.
According to the minister, the second part of Planting for Foods and Jobs (PFJ II) launched by authorities “is a game-changer that will help eliminate or reduce the challenges that have militated against attaining a sustainable and resilient food system”.
The minister stated PFJ 2.0 will subsequently scale up the adoption of latest and improved applied sciences in order to contribute in sustainable meals safety and resilience by 2028.
PFJ II is personal sector-driven and focuses on eleven chosen commodity worth chains – which when totally developed can contribute to transformation of the sector. These are grains – maize, rice, soybean and sorghum; greens – tomato, pepper and onion; roots and tubers – cassava and yam; and plantain and poultry.
While the programme’s focus is on implementing an environment friendly enter credit score system, the underpinning targets are to make sure meals availability, cut back meals worth inflation; promote import substitution, exports; create jobs and guarantee meals safety and resilience.
The good enter credit score system goals to reinforce operations of all worth chain actors concerned in manufacturing and processing of the eleven chosen commodity worth chains. Additionally, it should present a framework for interconnectedness of the worth chain actors, whereby good options could be delivered in a seamless, environment friendly and efficient method.
He urged all agricultural stakeholders – farmers, enter sellers, monetary establishments, merchants, processors, our revered chiefs, the youth and ladies – to embrace the PFJ Phase II.
“To guarantee targets are met, a digital expertise system might be deployed for steady knowledge assortment, monitoring and reporting to make sure remedial actions are taken promptly to maintain the programme on observe.
“The enabling policy environment will trigger increased financing to the private sector, enabling us to achieve the targetted objectives,” the minister additional famous.
Charity Akortia’s story
Charity Akortia, proprietor and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Greenworth Farm, scored 85.6 p.c to emerge 2023 National Best Farmer, whereas her shut contender Theophilus Ezenrane Ackah scored 76.1 p.c to select up the primary runner-up spot.
Charity Akortia has a diversified farm with each crops and animal-husbandry.
Her farm is very diversified, with crop enterprises masking the broad areas of roots and tubers, cereals, greens, plantation crops, legumes and timber species.
The livestock enterprises consist of huge ruminants, small ruminants, pigs, rabbits, grasscutters and native and unique poultry.
In addition, Ms. Akortia has 185 containers of beehives, which have been colonised with bees, and two fish ponds stocked with tilapia and catfish. She additionally has 1,200 baggage of mushrooms.
Ms. Akortia is into the cultivation of about 36 completely different crops with assorted acreage, together with 33 acres of cocoa farm, 88 acres of coconut farm, 450 acres of maize farm, 64 acres of mango and 120 acres of rice farm.
Additionally, Ms. Akortia rears assorted animals similar to 467 cattle, 1,023 pigs, 107 goats, 550 sheep, 97 rabbits, 85,000 unique poultry, 3,700 snails 185 containers of beehives, native poultry, guinea fowl and geese, amongst others.
The 57-year-old farmer from the Agona East district of Central Region, with tertiary schooling, has been farming for the previous 30 years; using a complete of 277 staff comprising 64 full-time staff and 212 informal staff.
The farms are situated within the Agona East, Agona West, Ekumfi and Ketu-North districts.