By Iddi Yire, GNA
Somanya (E/R), Aug. 5, GNA – Maize farmers at Obawale in the Yilo-Krobo District of the Easter Region, have expressed excitement about the doubling of their yields, with the implementation of Wynca Sunshine treated maize seed.
The Wynca Sunshine treated maize seed project is being implemented with support from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture.
A field demonstration on the farms showed that 2,920 kg per acre of maize was harvested on the farm that used the Wynca Sunshine maize high yield solution system as compared to the 1,133kg per acre harvested on the regular farmer’s farm.
Farmers in the area had given up on maize farming due to the poor nature of the soil, unfriendly weather conditions and the infestation of the Fall Army Worm, but the new treated seed gave them a new hope coupled with chemicals that helped fight the worms.
Wynca Sunshine signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the farmers in various demonstration farms to guarantee a minimum of 1,500kg/acre, and the company would make the difference if they fell short of that.
This goes a long way to support the government's Planting for Food and Jobs agenda.
The newly developed Wynca Sunshine treated maize seed project had been piloted in nine different maize growing communities in the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo and Eastern Regions, where farmers were able to record double yield.
Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, the Minister of Food and Agriculture, in a statement read on his behalf at the project site at Obawale in the Yilo-Krobo District, said he had taken note of Wynca Sunshine's contributions towards addressing food security issues in the country.
He said the contributions of the private sector to economic development in general and agricultural development in particular, in the country, could not be overemphasised.
“It is the conviction of government that the private sector should be given the needed space to contribute its quota to the economic development of the country, which is the reason why government is doing all it can to create the enabling policy and socio-economic environment to support the modernisation of agriculture in the country," he said.
The Minister noted that agriculture continued to be the major livelihood activity engaging more than 50 per cent of Ghana’s population.
He said the sector contributed significantly to the economic development of the country.
He said, however the sector was dominated by small holder farmers especially in the food crop sub-sector.
“These small holder farmers who produce the bulk of the country’s food needs are saddled with limited capacity to increase productivity.
"It is therefore, important that every effort is made to provide the needed support to enhance their capacity to make them more efficient.
“What we are witnessing today is a classic example of a private sector effort aimed at increasing the productivity of small holder maize farmers in the country," he added.
Dr Akoto said: “I can assure you that the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and the Department of Agriculture at the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies would partner with you to promote the adoption of improved technologies that are scientifically proven, environmentally friendly and socially accepted by our hardworking farmers.”
Mr James Zhang, the Marketing Manager of Wynca Sunshine said his Company’s policy was to expand its market and improve the farming techniques in the country.
“We have spared no efforts to contribute to the development of the Ghanaian agriculture, as well as to help the local famers.
"Last year we donated GH¢100,000.00 to Ghana’s Agricultural Department on farmers day to help local farmers, and we also carried out our ‘container recycle’ activity as a symbol of our determination to creating an environmentally friendly future for Ghanaians," he said.
Mr Zhang said this year his company planned to bring spray drone to the local market, which would greatly improve the efficiency of the agricultural industry.
“We will continue with our policy of bringing the latest product and techniques to Ghanaian farmers, to improve their skills and income," he stated.
Mr Francis Clottey, Yilo-Krobo District Agricultural Officer, who also doubles as the Chief Technical Officer of Wynca Sunshine, said research by the Company Sunshine showed that farmers at Sisiama in the Brong- Ahafo Region, who were using other products were able to harvest only 800kg per acre.
He said the maize high yield solution system developed by the Company was tried at two sites in 2016.
“We in collaboration with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture came up with a scheme to have nine demonstrations - four in the Eastern Region, four in the Brong- Ahafo Region and one in the Ashanti Region; to enlighten farmers on the correct application of the technology to double their yields," he said.
He said the only thing a farmer needed to do was to follow strict instruction upon undergoing a training, which was exclusive to the company.
Mr Joseph Narh, a maize farmer and a beneficiary of the Wynca Sunshine project, who has been farming actively over the past 20 years, said he used to get five bags of maize from his farm, however, using the Wynca Sunshine treated maize, he now harvests 14 to 15 bags.