Workshop on Tree Crop Devt. Authority ends in Accra

About 50 experts from the tree crop value chain, on Friday ended a one-day validation workshop aimed at making inputs to the first Tree Crop Development Authority Act, in Accra.

The Act, when finalised would set standards and specifications to regulate the tree crop sector for a sustainable production, processing and trading of the crop.

The Development Authority Act is expected to be used alongside the Tree Crop Bill that is currently before cabinet.

Both documents would  enable the sector put in place a funding mechanism from levies on fresh and processed imports and exports to and from Ghana, but with strict approval from the Ministry of Finance.

The authority would also ensure the percentage of levies does not exceed 1.25per cent and not distributed in any manner.

As per the Act, all processors, traders and nucleus farms would be expected to register their out growers, and ensure that they subscribe to the authority for a traceability code.

The experts also discussed issues on production and management of planting materials, agronomical practices, grading, milling, crushing and processing storage, transportation and handling, testing and facilities for processing.

The Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture, in charge of perennial crops, Mr George Oduro, speaking at the event, charged the participants to come out with contributions that would be acceptable to all stakeholders.

According to him, the tree crop sector was dear to the heart of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo hence the need to have a bill and an act to back it legally.

Mr Oduro said the bill would be laid before Parliament as soon as cabinet finished work on it.

He said “we want to make the tree crop sector productive because its huge potential when effectively harnessed would change the economic fortunes of the country.”

BY LAWRENCE VOMAFA-AKPALU

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