The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, has performed the swearing-in ceremony of a nine-member Grains and Legumes Development Board.
At the swearing-in ceremony, Dr. Owusu Afriyie indicted the Board to revive the grains and legume industry by exploring the sector’s full potential. He said the Board should formulate policies and programmes to increase revenue that benefits farmers.
Touching on the Ministry’s flagship programme, he assured the Board that the government is aggressively pursuing key interventions such as the 1D1F to improve the grain and legume production in Ghana. He indicated that Ghana is on its way to achieving self-sufficiency in legumes and grain production and as such would need their fullest cooperation.
The nine-member Board is chaired by Mr. Alexander Akwasi Acquah, Mr. Samuel Boadu, Mr. Seth Osei-Akoto, Mr. Francis Kwasi Adzalo, Mr. Peter Oteng Daro Dr. Robert Agyeibi Asuboah, Mr. Samuel Danquah Arkhurst, Madam Monica Boakye-Kutin, and Mr. William Oppong Bio as members.
The Board Chair, Mr. Acquah, in his acceptance speech, said agriculture has been the mainstay of Ghana’s economy, employing about 60 percent of the workforce. He added that the Board would work assiduously to come out with policies and programmes that would augment the Ministry of Food and Agriculture’s (MOFA’s) agenda to promote agriculture.
Dr, Acquah pledged an allegiance that, the Board would ensure continued support for the government flagship programme “Planting for Food and Jobs” initiative to provide quality foundation seeds of the major staple crops to farmers. Also, the Board would support the commodity value chain development process, he noted.
To this end, Mr. Acquah, said this would ensure sustainable food production and food security in the country. “Seed, which is the basic unit of plant propagation and critical to crop production, will be made available to farmers to increase their household incomes and reduce poverty,” he said. With the needed support from stakeholders, the importation of seeds from other countries would now be a thing of the past, as happened in the previous years, Dr. Acquah assured.
The Ministry of Food and Agriculture is making strides to make Ghana the food basket in West Africa, and as such, plans to regulate all the sectors of production. Many have praised the Agric. Minister for such an initiative as they believe prices of these seeds would now be controlled and farmers would have better price offers to buy them.
Mandate of the Grains and Legumes Development Board
The mission of the Board is to produce and distribute good quality Foundation seeds of cereals, legumes, and vegetable seeds, as well as vegetatively propagated planting materials of cassava, plantain, yam, and citrus seedlings.