Post-harvest losses hampering food security- Study
| Updated Nov 16, 2017 at 11:20am
Ghana’s quest to achieve food security and sufficiency all year round is hampered by post-harvest losses.
A study by the Africa Post Harvest Losses Information System in 2016 revealed that the country loses about 318 thousand 514 tonnes of maize annually during the post-harvest period.
The three Regions of the north where poverty is pronounced account for 34 thousand, 189 of the figure with the Upper West Region having lost 779 tonnes to post harvest management cases.
Upper West Regional Director of Agriculture Emmanuel Sasu Yeboah disclosed this at a forum on Post-Harvest Losses in Wa.
The first ever Upper West Regional forum on Post-Harvest Losses was put together by the Ghana Trade and Livelihood Coalition, GLTC in collaboration with the Netherlands Development Organisation, SNV under the Voice for Change Partnership program.
The Country Program Coordinator of the SNV Eric Banye gave the broader objectives of the forum and the interventions needed to address post-harvest losses for the attainment of food security. He as well elaborated on the possible best ways to help farmers in the country reap the full benefits of their drudgery.
The Upper West Regional Director of Agriculture Emmanuel SasuYeboah said aside the occurrence of post-harvest losses, food security is being challenged by limited land, water and increased water variability due to climate change.
He said the major crops which suffer post-harvest losses in the region include maize, sorghum, rice, groundnut, cowpea and vegetables-a situation which compels farmers to sell off the produce almost immediately thereby earning little.
The forum which focused on “addressing post-harvest losses, implication for planting for food and jobs policy” brought together staff of MOFA, District Assemblies and representatives of Civil Society Organisations.
Chief Director of the Regional Coordinating Council Alhaji Abubakar Abdullai reiterated the significance of agriculture to the national economy with the sector contributing over 20 percent of the country’s GDP and over 40 percent of the nation’s workforce.
This notwithstanding, the sector he observed is saddled with enormous challenges thereby affecting productivity.