Demand for high starch yielding cassava roots for industrial processing is projected to increase due to private sector investments and the 1D1F policy. It is critical for farmers to increase productivity from 10MT -12MT per acre to 20-24MT to industrial demand. It against this background that AIC under the Ghana Cassava Industrialization Partnership Project (GCIPP) funded by AGRA organized capacity development workshops.
The event targeted more than 200 community-based advisors (CBAs) and about 30 agriculture extension officers from the Department of Agriculture in five districts, Bono region.
The workshops covered the following;
1. Adoption of improved cassava varieties.
Compared to the conventional varieties, improved cassava varieties are disease and pest resistant, as well as high yielding with over 20% starch content. These qualities make it suitable for starch, HQCF, and ethanol production.
2. Improved production practices
Effective land preparation, planting, spacing, and planned cultivation to meet industrial requirements and demand.
3. Effective Crop Protection
Farmers were advised to control weeds at the early stages of planting to prevent the competition of weeds and plants for nutrients which will lead to optimal yield
Again they were admonished to apply the right weedicides, the right quantities, and at the right time of the planting season.
The Workshops also enlightened the CBAs to understand that the cassava they produce should be market-driven, meeting buyer specifications and requirements. This will boost demand for their cassava produce.
Farmers are expected to adopt the new cassava varieties which have the potential to increase their yields and improve their livelihoods.
In all, about 20,000 farmers are expected to receive this training from the Community Based Advisors (CBAs) with technical support from Agricultural Departments in Jaman North, Tain, Sunyani -West, Dormaa Municipal, and Tano-North districts of the Bono region