By Prince Paul
The Desk Officer at the Department of Agriculture in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality, Mr. Philips Amoah has noted that the new cassava sticks brought by the West Africa Agric Productivity Program (WAAPP) is yielding more than six times the yield of the local variety. This he added has enhanced cassava production in the country, even in the dry season compared to previous years.
Mr. Amoah made the notes when he appeared as guest on Rite FM’s Akuafo Sesen.
‘The improved varieties has resulted in increased yields compared to the local varieties and because of that the impact of cassava shortage normally experienced during the dry season is not felt as compared to previous years when cassava is very expensive. Now, due to the introduction of the WAAPP cassava varieties, cassava is in abundance and the price is also very low.
‘The new cassava sticks brought by the Department of Agric through the WAAPP Cassava initiative is of much more profitable than the local ones. With the new varieties that we brought, the yields are six times higher than the local ones we have and that is why we don’t feel the impact of cassava shortage this year as compared to previous years,’ Mr. Amoah explained.
According to him, the new varieties have been replicated in all the districts across the country resulting in the abundance of cassava in the system. The little challenge, the Desk Officer observed however is how to uproot the mature cassava on the field due to the weather condition. He was however hopeful that the rains will soon fall in the coming weeks in order to enhance a bountiful harvest,’ he added.
Mr. Amoah further explained that the water content in the new cassava varieties is very low as compared to the local ones which lead to a corresponding and high quantity and quantity of the harvested cassava.
He therefore encouraged cassava farmers to contact the Department of Agric in their various districts to access the new varieties of the cassava sticks as there is ready market for cassava because now the growers and the breweries demand more as their raw materials.