Farmers in the Upper West Region have been encouraged to adopt the application of inorganic fertiliser on their plants to boost yield and protect the health of consumers as well.
Apparently, the compost was climate friendly and supported ecological farming as well as produce less reaction for consumers as it contained less chemicals, and particularly good for fruits and vegetables.
The District Director at the Department of Agriculture in the Wa East District, Ms Mavis Derigubah said in order to achieve this, the department had commenced training of farmers in compost preparation.
The Director who stated this in an interaction with the Ghanaian Times on Monday at Wa on sustainable agriculture, said materials for making compost was readily available in the environment and on animal farms.
She explained that the need for compost was as a result of the increase in prices of organic fertiliser on the world market, as well as the need to employ climate-free agricultural practices due to recent concerns about climate change.
Even with the Planting for Food and Jobs that come with subsidised fertiliser, the percentage of subsidy continues to depreciate and it is in order that at some point the farmers are expected to be weaned off government subsidy and be able to purchase the commodity on their own.
“It should not be always that government will continue to support farmers so we are going into compost preparation; we started this year and with the help of some of our staff and extension officers, we teach farmers how to prepare their own compost and useat least for the first application on their plant”, she said.
She explained that chemicals were unhealthy for the health consumers on the food produced and said the compost could better serve the interest of farmers and consumers alike.
She encouraged the farmers to take opportunity of the window, and get to know how to make the preparation of compost to offset part of the costs expended on farm inputs such as fertiliser.
The Regional Director of Agriculture, Mr Emmanuel Sasu Yeboah, adding his voice explained that the chemical fertilizer also affected the soil structure if it was used continually and said the compost was more favourable in farming activities.
“The chemical fertilizer when applied on a piece of land for a longer time affect the water holding capacity of the soilbut the compost helps to improve upon the soil structure”, he said.
He used the opportunity to call on farmers in the region to also invest in animal rearing as part of their agricultural activities to ensure that they had income all year round even when the farming was not bringing in the needed income.
FROM LYDIA DARLINGTON FORDJOUR, WA