By Stephen Asante, GNA
Kumasi, April 8, GNA – Ghana must invest in the seed sector for accelerated growth of agriculture, Dr Takemore Chagomoka, West and Central Africa Manager of the Seed Co Group, a seed company, has advised.
“The seed industry continues to present huge opportunities to the youth, farmers and agricultural students,” he noted, explaining that sustainably developing the value chain was good for a country whose economy was agro-based.
He said many job prospects were available from the management of plant genetic resources, variety development, early generation and seed production, seed multiplication to seed distribution and marketing.
Mr Chagomoka, speaking at the maiden edition of a seed sector forum organized by the Department of Horticulture under the Faculty of Agriculture, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), in Kumasi, said the country was well-positioned to bring vibrancy to the seed sector.
“Assisting institutions like the KNUST to work with other key stakeholders to embark on research and studies that encourage the adoption and use of scientific advances in the seed industry is a necessity.
“This would eventually help to improve efficiency, farmers’ yield and business profitability,” the Regional Manager observed.
The forum brought together representatives from the academia and Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) and some technocrats.
“Taking Advantages of Advances, Entrepreneurship and Business Opportunities in the Modern Seed Sector”, was the theme.
Topics included ‘The Horticulture Department and the Seed Science and Technology Programme’, ‘National and Global Seed Sector and Opportunities’, and ‘Regional Seed Sector Advances and Opportunities’.
Dr Eli Gaveh, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Horticulture, KNUST, said the programme aimed at deepening the understanding of agricultural students on the dynamics relating to the seed sector.
It was tailored to enable them to appreciate the current state of the sector, challenges and job opportunities as pertained to the value chain, he stressed.
The Senior Lecturer bemoaned the huge resources committed to importing seeds from abroad, and that, such setbacks presented the country with the opportunity to research and develop local and improved varieties suitable for the environment.
Professor Enoch A. Osekre, Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture, KNUST, assured that the University would not relent in developing the capacity of agronomists to spearhead the growth of the agricultural sector.
The Reverend John Manu, Ashanti Regional Director, MoFA, said the Government was designing strategies and policies that supported a dynamic seed sector.