Farmers advised to use safe chemicals for food storage

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Science Safe Chemicals
Science Safe Chemicals

Mr. Phanuel Yawson Dzigba Sosu the Yendi Municipal Crops Officer of Ministry of Agriculture has advised farmers to use safe chemicals to store foodstuff.

He said the use of unsafe chemicals could have negative effects on consumers, indicating that organic chemicals were safer with no side effects on human or animals.

Mr. Phanuel Yawson gave the advice when he took a group of farmers through topics like chemicals for storage, inadequate storage facilities, and shelling machines for soya beans at a meeting organized by Research for Development and Innovation Agriculture and Learning (ReDIAL) Project at Yendi in the Northern Region.

He said some of the organic chemicals safe for storage included neem extract, pounded pepper, pounded Mahogany bark, however the use of inorganic chemicals came with caution and direction which most farmers were not adhering to.
On shelling machines for soya beans, he said they were inadequate in the system and one could only get them from Renters, which was expensive for some farmers to purchase.

He said soya beans were oil crops and needed to be stored well to get some for planting in their next farming season.
Mr. Mohammed Fusheini Project Officer of ReDIAL indicated that ReDIAL project was supported by European Union (EU) for the past two years with machines to support the smallholder farmers, including marginalized women, farmers with physical disabilities.

He said soil testing tool was used to gather scientific data on soil nutrient within the targeted zonal landscape with the help of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST).

He said they were processing data to identify and profile the soil nutrient deficiency of farmlands to aid the identification of specific nutrient enrichment and the EU had visited Yendi and Gushegu which started with village savings and loans made up of 13 farmers from each group to be supported by EU.

He said EU operated in Yendi Municipal, Techiman Municipal of Bono East Region, Ejura of Ashanti Region, Sefwi Wiawso Municipal of Western Region North Region and Donkor Krom.

He said the farmer groups were drawn from Kushegu, Pion, Tusani, Zang, Kuga and Yendi to attend the Farmers Group one-day meeting in Yendi.

Alhaji Zakaria Fuseini, the outgoing Yendi Municipal Agriculture Officer said the shelling machines for soya beans were from China and Brazil and expensive for Group Farmers to acquire loans from banks to buy because of interest rate.

He said government used to assist farmers to buy, such machines but they defaulted in payment as government no more assisted farmers with loans.

He said a group could get the machines from GIZ through the assistance of Offices of Ministry of Agriculture and said Extension Officers of Agriculture in Yendi were only five and found it difficult to train all the farmers in the use of the chemicals for storage.

Mr. Peter Tana, the Yendi Municipal Social Welfare Officer expressed appreciation to ReDIAL and EU for supporting the marginalized women and farmers with physical disability in the Municipality which will go a long way to improve their standards of living.

The farmers suggested to Government to establish the shelling machines with Ministry of Agriculture for farmers to rent, and give prices of soya beans just like what was done to cocoa and other crops.

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