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Farmers Census Key to Agriculture Development

The Eastern Regional Agric Extension Officer is making a strong case for the revival of the national farmers’ census which he argued could offer the country the opportunity to determine the exact database of numbers in the country.

According to Papa Allotey, such a venture would provide the government with information regarding the exact number of farmers and the varieties of produce across the country for effective and efficient planning towards assisting farmers in the agric sector.

The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) was to embark on a Ghana Census of Agriculture fieldwork in February, 2018 to collect data to inform national policy on the sector.

However, the exercise failed to come off as planned.

Speaking in an interview with Captain Adabugar during the Rite Morning Ride on Wednesday on the importance of the census, Mr. Allotey noted that such exercise is vital to give government adequate information regarding farmers in the country to help in policy planning.

The Extension Officer said lack of knowledge on the exact farmer base in the country could affect the provision of logistics including inputs to aid farmers in their production.

“The absence of the exact number of farmers in the country and what they produce could affect government’s proper planning for the provision of inputs and other logistics to assist farmers deliver their best in terms of production,” he asserted.

He recounted the last exercise conducted in the country in this regard which he recalled happened 20 years ago.

“It has been over twenty (20) years since the last national farmers’ census was done and this only focused on piloting rather than a broad census and this could not have served its purpose since the exercise only covered selected areas,” he recalled.

Agriculture makes up a large proportion of economic activities in most developing economies, including Ghana and it creates jobs and improves livelihoods of the rural populations.

Experts have said that agricultural statistics provide input and output information in agriculture, including crop production, livestock products, forestry and fishery products, land use, agricultural machinery, water use, fertilizers, and pesticides.

They argue that the development of agricultural statistics is key to monitoring poverty reduction, food security, environmental sustainability and improving the livelihood of citizens.

Source; Prince Paul Amuzu/www.ritefmonline.org/princeamuzu667@gmail.com

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