On yearly bases, Upper East, Upper West and Northern regions have experienced either drought or flood and sometimes both, in a cropping season.
This has often contributed to low production of foodstuff cultivated by farmers in these regions. The early millet locally known as ‘naara’ is however recommended for cultivation in these regions due to its resilient to drought and floods.
Unfortunately, the scale of cultivation and yields of this indigenous crop are declining due to disease infestation.
It is against this backdrop that scientists at the Savannah Agricultural Research Institute under the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR-SARI) based at Manga in the Binduri district of Upper East Region, have researched into 5 varieties of millet which will soon introduce them to farmers this year.
A Research Scientist in charge of Millet Breeding of CSIR-SARI, Asungre Peter Anabire in an exclusive interview with A1 News expressed optimism that, the 5 varieties if adopted by farmers, will improve on millet production in the country.
The new millet varieties have the ability to withstand diseases and the effects of drought and floor.
He has therefore called on the government to adopt these varieties of millet under its “Planting for Food and Jobs” Programme.
According to Mr. Asungre, millet which is consumed nationwide has a good market value than other cereal crops grown in this part of the country, and therefore deserves some attention.
Farmers cultivating millet are not supported with the fertilizer subsidy under the “Planting for Food and Jobs” Programme, however the fertilizer subsidy under the programme, favours farmers who cultivate maize, hence the mass shift from millet to maize.
Source: a1radioonline.com | Joshua Asaah | Ghana