Mr Isaac Nii Quaye, a 55-year-old farmer, on Friday emerged the overall Best Farmer for the La Nkwatanang-Madina Municipality.
He was presented with a brand new tricycle, fridge, vegetable seeds, kings mate sprayers and other agricultural inputs.
Nii Quaye, who was said to have been farming for 29 years, has 24 acres of maize, 15 acres of cassava, and three acres of plantain, an acre of cocoyam, 35 ducks, 60 local fowls and 40 goats.
Madam Cecilia Boachie-Yankey, the 1st runner up received a fridge, a wheelbarrow and other agricultural products.
She has 2,000 brokers, 3,000 catfish, 500 layers, 50 turkey, 550 cockerels and 200 ducks.
Mr John Tetteh was the 2nd runner-up and got a fridge, shovel, and other agricultural tools.
He has 20 acres of maize, 15 acres of cassava, 1.5 acres of pepper, an acre of tomatoes, 0.5 acres of yam, and three acres of plantain, a few pawpaw trees, 40 local fowls and 20 goats.
Mr Samuel Armah Tetteh was adjudged the Municipal Best Youth Farmer, Mr Kwame Nyante, won the Municipal Best Crop Farmer, Mr Samuel Kofi Kina, Municipal Best Livestock Farmer, while Madam Agnes Efua Owusua won the Municipal Best Woman Farmer.
The rest are; Mr Benjamin Kojo Adanu, Municipal Best Agricultural Extension Worker, Mr Paul Amankwah Andoh, Municipal Best Physically Challenged Farmer, Mr selorm Hannah Hadzor, the MCE’s special award for backyard farmer with Woodbury farms winning the Municipal Best Poultry Farmer.
Mrs Jennifer Dede Adjabeng, the Municipal Chief Executive, La Nkwatanang-Madina Assembly, commended the farmers for their selfless efforts in ensuring that the country had enough food for local consumption and export.
The Day was on the theme: “Ensuring Agribusiness Development under COVID-19-Opportunities and Challenges.”
The Municipal Chief Executive said the theme was timely because it highlighted the new orientation for all actors along the agricultural value chain.
She said the rush for foodstuff during the partial lockdown due to the outbreak of COVID-19 reinforced the importance of farmers in the country.
The MCE said with support from the Canadian Government, the Department of Agriculture was implementing the Modernizing in Ghana project aimed at training crop farmers on soil conservation methods, promotion of poultry and vegetable production.
The project will also train both farmers and extension staff on the “Green Label” certification, undertake disease surveillance and carry out technical demonstrations on farmers’ fields and conduct technical review sessions.
As at the end of October 2020, 20,620 kg of seed maize, 373 kg various vegetable seeds, 22,500 kg of inorganic fertilizers and 69,500 kg of organic fertilizers have been received into agro-input shops in the Municipality and sold to farmers, of which 852 farmers have so far benefited.
Agriculture was the only sector that posed a positive growth of 2.5 per cent in the first half of 2020, despite the ravages of COVID-19 pandemic.
Mrs Adjabeng said Government had recruited and posted some Agriculture Extension Staff and presented motorcycles to them to augment the low numbers in the Service.
She said the government was revamping some storage facilities across the country to store grains from the Planting for Food and Jobs (PFFJ) programme.
The 2017/2018 Agriculture Census Report shows that there are 2,585,531 agricultural households in the country, with a population of 11,340,974, with women making up 50.5 per cent of the farming population and males, 49.5 per cent.
The Census provided a basis to monitor the progress of Government’s interventions, offer insights on the transformation of the sector and ensure the integration of the agriculture, industry and services of the economy.
Mr Maxwell Odonkor, the Municipal Director of Agric, La Nkwatanang-Madina Assembly, said the Department was promoting backyard farming and assisted 56 interested households to establish home gardens by providing them with seedlings of tomato, Chili pepper, lettuce and cabbage.
“We have supplied 1,129 cockerels to 69 households in support of the Government’s flagship programme “Rearing for Food and Jobs.”
He urged people who desired to utilise their backyards productively to contact extension officers in their areas for assistance.
Mr Odonkor said the Assembly had supplied 165 grafted mango seedlings to 26 households and seven educational institutions under the Planting for Export and Rural Development Programme.
He said the Department through its Veterinary Services Unit had as at the end of October 2020 inspected and passed for human consumption 7,963 ruminant carcasses, made up of 3,754 cattle, 393 sheep and 3,916 goats.
“We have immunized during our field visits 588 pets against the deadly rabies disease, including dogs, cats and monkeys,” Mr Odonkor said.