Farmers of the Savannah Region precisely Bole district have received 120,000 cashew seedlings to improve and increase cashew production in the area.
The beneficiary farmers, about 700- 800 from various farming communities across the district received seedlings of cashew under the planting for export and industrialization policy.
Distributing the cashew seedlings to farmers, the District Agric Director of Bole, Mr Mumuni Ibrahim noted that, the distribution forms part of the Nana Addo’s 10-year Cashew Development Plan to increase Cashew production and bring development to the doorstep of the rural communities.
Addressing the media at the distribution of cashew nut at the Bole District Assembly, Mr Ibrahim said :
''We are here to hand over the distribution of 120,00 cashew seedlings to farmers. The seedlings are ready for distribution. Last year we distributed 80,000 and about 132 farmers benefited. This year we targeted to give to 2,000 farmers. Last year, Bole district was second in the country and placed first in the Northern Region for cashew nut production. This year we plan to place first at the National level''.
The Agric Officer also urged unregistered farmers to register to benefit from the government's flagship programme for planting for export and rural development
''The seedlings are ready and we are calling on farmers who have not registered to register at the Department of Agric so that they can be part of government's flagship programme for planting for export and rural development''.
Mr Ibrahim emphasized that, the cashew development initiative just like the government's planting for food and jobs flagship programme, aimed at diversifying the country's agriculture sector.
He explained that, under the project, farmers will not only receive free seedlings but will be supported technically for a successful cashew production in the district.
He urged farmers in the area to take advantage of the various Agricultural interventions and incentives to increase production and improve their livelihoods.
Mr Ibrahim urged the beneficiary farmers not to hesitate to contact his office for any assistance to ensure that the cashew project succeed.
The beneficiary farmers expressed their profound gratitude to the government for the initiative and thus promise to work very hard to increase cashew production in the district.
Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD) Programme
The Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD) Programme is a decentralized National Tree Crop Programme to promote rural economic growth and improve household incomes of rural farmers through the provision of certified improved seedlings, extension services, business support and regulatory mechanisms.
The Government of Ghana through the joint effort by the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and Ministry of Food and Agriculture rolled out the PERD programme to develop nine (9) commodity value chains namely Cashew, Coffee, Cotton Coconut, Citrus, Oil Palm, Mango, Rubber and Shea through a decentralised system.
The programme seeks to create sustainable raw material base to spur up the decentralised industrialisation drive through One District Factory initiative. The 5-year PERD programme will support 1million farmers in 170 districts with certified free planting materials to cover over one (1) million hectares of farmlands and engage 10,000 young graduates as crop specialized extension officers.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, inaugurated Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD) programme in April 2019 and said the programme will enhance the foreign exchange earning capacity of the Ghanaian economy.
The programme designed to focus on the development of selected export tree crops, namely cashew, coffee, oil palm, coconut, mango and rubber.
The President added that PERD presents Ghana with opportunities for diversification and new sources of revenue.