The Ghanaian Government has officially launched a GH.C 1.6m Cashew mass spraying exercise as part of measures to boost cashew production,create more jobs and increase the income levels of cashew farmers.
The Cashew mass spraying exercise, according to reports is expected to increase production by about 30% and will target over 10,000 acres of cashew farms in 2017 and an estimated 70,000 acres annually beginning from 2018.
Records from Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), shows that cashew alone generated about $197 million worth of export revenue in 2016 and shows that Ghana is currently leading the agricultural Non-Traditional Export (NTE) with its representation of 53% out of $371 received from the total agricultural NTE sub-sector.
The cashew mass spraying exercise was launched at Wenchi in the Brong Ahafo Region by the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), Gifty Klenam, who said the move reinforces the NPP government’s commitment of developing the cashew industry in order to promote sustainable growth.
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She announced plans to soon set up a Cashew Development Fund and a Cashew Development Board, which would put in place a regulatory framework to make cashew the next cocoa in Ghana was underway.
Gifty added that a 10-year National Cashew Development Plan (2017-2027), which will soon be implemented will support research and development, help produce over 2,000 000 grafted seedlings annually, expand the production of raw cashew nuts (RCN) from 70,000MT to 200,000MT, amongst others.
Moreso, she said the spraying initiative was in line with the President’s “Ghana beyond aid” agenda aimed at transforming the Ghanaian economy, industrialize agriculture, process and improve exports in order to halt the country’s collection of foreign aid.