Mr Evans Addison Coleman, the Agona West Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), said farmers need to employ innovative ways to improve yield and income but admitted that funding remains an obstacle to achieving this.
He, therefore, pledged government’s support to farmers for the procurement of equipment to venture into agribusiness to help market their products for improved wellbeing.
Mr Coleman said the Government, led by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, envisaged the challenge and introduced the One District One Factory initiative to give farmers ready market for their produce.
He said Agona West would soon benefit from an oil palm processing factory, which was almost 90 per cent complete, to encourage farmers to produce more oil palm to be processed for export.
Mr Coleman, at the 38th Farmers Day at Agona Kwaman in the Central Region, said since the introduction of the Planting for Food and Jobs in 2017, a total of 12,105 farmers in the Agona West Municipality had benefited from subsidised seeds and fertilizers, which had significantly increased yield.
It was on the theme: “Accelerating Agricultural Development through Value Addition.”
Mrs Cynthia Mamle Morrison, the Member of Parliament for Agona West, expressed happiness about the zeal of youth to venture into agriculture, which had inspired her to institute a fund to support them for large scale farming to increase both cash and food crop production.
She, therefore, urged Ghanaians to patronize local foods, especially rice, to reduce the huge amounts of dollars used to import the staple, which would help save some monies to boost the economy.
Mrs Morrison urged the farmers to improve on cocoa production in the district to derive the maximum funds from the Ghana Cocoa Board to help rehabilitate roads and other projects in the area and improve standards of living.
Okofo Katakyi Nyarko EKU X, Omanhene of Nyarkrom Traditional Area, who presided, lauded the commitment of the youth to pursue farming as a career and appealed to the Government support them with some incentives.
He advised parents to take advantage of the Free Senior High School policy to ensure their children got the foundation to become responsible adults in society.
Twelve farmers, including a person with disability, were honoured during the programme.
Mr Emmanuel Asuako, 34, was adjudged the Agona West Best Farmer and received a motorbike, five cutlasses, two bars of key soap, one knapsack sprayer, and wax print.
He started his farming career 12 years ago immediately he completed junior high school and has 10 acres of maize, 80 acres of cocoa, five acres of plantain, three fishponds, snails, livestock and poultry.
The eleven other farmers also took home plasma TV sets, double decker fridge, pairs of wellington boot, pieces of wax prints, burner gas stoves and cylinders, and key soap.