Sang (N/R), May 05, GNA – About 6,500 farmers in six districts of the Northern Region have received certified seed starter packs comprising maize, rice, and soybean with appropriate fertilizer and inoculum for soybean to try along their own saved seeds during the cropping season.
Yields realised from the certified seeds compared to yields realised from farmers’ own seeds are to help sensitise farmers about the need to use certified seeds for increased productivity.
Catholic Relief Services (CRS) has collaborated with the International Fertilizer Development Centre to scale up its (IFDC) Agricultural Technology Transfer Project (ATTP) by distributing the seed starter packs to smallholder farmers in the beneficiary districts including Mion, Saboba, Tolon, Chereponi, West Gonja and East Gonja.
The ATTP works to ensure increased availability and use of agricultural technologies to maximise and sustain productivity in the northern part of the country to achieve increased competitiveness of rice, maize, and soy value chains to foster broad-based economic growth.
Mr William Boakye-Acheampong, Northern Regional Director of Agriculture, who spoke during Seed and Technology Fair at Sang to distribute the seed starter packs amongst other technologies to farmers in the Mion District, advised farmers to stop recycling seeds on their farms.
The Seed and Technology Fair was to sensitise farmers in the communities about the need to use certified seeds for increased productivity as well as accompanying technologies including appropriate use and methods of applying specific fertilizers and inoculum.
It also created a platform for agro-dealers and local vendors of seeds and agro-inputs to interface with farmers to enhance their relationship to do business more effectively.
Mr Boakye-Acheampong said recycling of seeds led to low yields urging farmers to use improved certified seeds for improved yields and incomes.
He also spoke about agricultural initiatives of the government urging farmers to take advantage of the planting for food and jobs campaign and the fertilizer subsidy programme to increase productivity.
Mr Kris Ozar, Country Representative of CRS said they were interested in serving farmers, assuring that it would continue to work to facilitate their (farmers) access to improved inputs for increased productivity.
Dr Tara Wood, Deputy Chief of Party of ATTP urged farmers to adopt technologies introduced under the ATTP project, which improved soil nutrients for high crop yields.
Some of the recipients of the seed starter packs were happy that agro-dealers would now be visible in the communities to enable farmers to easily access certified seeds for planting.
By Albert Futukpor, GNA