The government has been urged to subsidize agricultural production inputs to make it easy for the youth to enter into farming.
Mr Paul Asiamah, the 2021 district best farmer for Atwima Nwabiagya North, who appealed, said the frequent hikes in the prices of farm inputs such as sprayers, pesticides, fertilizers, cutlasses, and other equipment, made it difficult for farmers, especially the youth, to enter and expand their farms.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency, after receiving his awards, he said it was important for the government to implement effective measures that would attract the youth into farming.
Mr Asiamah received a tricycle, knapsack sprayers, wellington boosts, fertilizers, and a certificate as his prize.
Seventeen other farmers were also rewarded at the ceremony, which was held under the theme “planting for food and jobs – consolidating food systems in Ghana”.
They received items such as cutlasses, wellington boots, fertilizers, sprayers, fridges, and certificates.
Mr Asiamah, who is 51 years, said farming was a lucrative business and it was not true that it deformed or made people weak.
He appealed to the youth to ignore the negative perception about farming and actively engage in it not only to increase food production but also improve their socio-economic conditions.
Madam Rebecca Yeboah, the District Chief Executive, said farming, unlike the olden days, had now become very attractive, with the introduction of many government interventions and programs to support agricultural production.
She appealed to young graduates not to sit down but rather, venture into agriculture to earn income.
“It is time to stop graduate unemployment. Farming has become a fruitful venture that needs even more elites.
It is wrong to classify only illiterates as the people who go into farming”, She stated.
Mrs. Grace Achiaa, District Director of Agriculture said with the introduction of modern technology, farming had been extended, and this had encouraged most young people within the district to venture into it as compared to the previous years.
“The government through the ministry of food and agriculture introduced a planting for food and jobs program in 2017, and this had played a significant role in contributing to food sufficiency, reduced food imports and created employment for the youth within the district”, she said.
Mrs Achiaa said farmers now have reliable access to adequate quantity and quality of improved seeds, coupled with a significant increase in the availability of fertilizers, had been motivated to do more, hence the increasing number of farmers in the district.
She urged farmers to be wary of bush fires in order not to destroy their farms as the dry season approached.