Gold Fields Ghana Foundation has spent GH¢207,000 to purchase fertilizers to support 240 cocoa farmers in the Prestea-Huni Valley Municipality of the Western Region to boost cocoa production.
The Foundation also intends to help create and sustain jobs in the cocoa sector and establish the fact that mining can co-exist with farming.
This was disclosed by Abdel Razak Yakubu, Manager, Community and Stakeholder Engagement of Aboso Gold Fields Limited at the Cocoa Inputs Support Programme for 2019 held at Huni Valley in the Western Region.
He explained that the farmers were selected based on farm size, maintenance of the farm, as well as the location of the farm.
“The programme, which started last year, saw 120 farmers benefitting from the cocoa inputs support, this year. We have added another 120 farmers, making 240 farmers since its inception,” he revealed.
He said each farmer was provided with fertilizer for every two acre farm within a period of three years, adding “the sustainability and continuation of the programme will depend on the outputs from the various farms.”
Mr. Razak Yakubu advised the farmers not to sell the bags of fertilizer presented to them but use them for the intended purpose.
Isaac Akatti, Chief Technical Officer of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture in the Prestea- Huni Valley Municipality, thanked Gold Fields for supporting farmers in the area in diverse ways.
“AGL is agricultural friendly; farming is a business and if the right methods are applied, it increases the yield.
“I will encourage farmers to frequently involve extension officers on their farms,” he added.
He urged farmers to take advantage of government’s ‘Planting For Food and Jobs’ programme to grow rice and maize.