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Government urge to encourage coconut cultivation to strengthen the economy

The Green Coast Group and Consult Limited has appealed to the government to add coconut cultivation to his agendum ‘farming for food and jobs’ for the people.

This the group believes would reduce the unemployment rate in the country and contribute to strengthen the country’s economy.

Speaking to the Chief Executive Officer of the Green Coast Group, Mr. Kwaku Boateng on Rite News stated: “coconut is a very important plant, delicious and nutritious. But apart from eating it as food, it has many economic values which can contribute positively to the GDP.”

Using Philippines as an example, he noted that they (Philippines) exports more than USD 1 billion worth of coconut to the United State annually.

Adding; “Ghana is blessed with arable land which would be good for almost every plant cultivation, so the country can take advantage of to grow coconut on a larger scale to earn foreign exchange to support the government ambition of developing the country’s economy,” he said.

Mr. Boateng further noted that the government’s intension to develop the agricultural sector is a step in the right direction but can be more effective if its attaches some level of seriousness to   coconut production.

The Chief Executive Officer of Green Coast and Consult Limited said the government policies; operation planting for food and jobs and one district one factory are all unique policies that can create more job to the people to enhance standard of living but coconut cultivation is equally important thus equal attention.

Fact check has it that Ghana used to have about 42, 000 hectares of coconut plantation, but has reduced to 36,000 hectares, a declining in the country’s coconut cultivation.

School of thought is suggesting that effort to improve coconut production should include the formation of farmers’ cooperative unions, strengthening the already existing farmer base organizations, organizing capacity building workshops, make available extension services support, provide disease resistance planting materials to farmers and creation of platforms to meet international standards.

He appealed, quality control checks in terms of pesticide residue level, good farming practices and ready market to boost coconut production.

Coconut production in Ghana is mainly in smallholdings (0.5-5.0 ha). Out of the annual national production of 224 million nuts, 179 million (80%) were produced by smallholders from an area of 36,000 hectares.

Source: Austin Ofori Addo/ritefmonline.org/austinofori.addo@gmail.coms




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