The Western Regional Cocoa Health and Extension Division of the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), has partnered Agri Plus to train CHED Officials, cocoa farmers and other stakeholders within the region on the benefits of the usage of newly introduced anti-capsid (Akate) insecticide which increases cocoa yield.

The new insecticides known as ‘Transform Akate’, has been introduced to support cocoa farmers fight various insect and pest infestations in their plantations and eventually improve yield.

‘Transform Akate’ according to information available had undergone series of test and it is proven to be the most active anti-capsid insecticide that can fight the age-long capsid infestation which is locally called ‘Akate’ and other destructive insect borers that swarm pre-harvest cocoa farms and attack stems, branches, pods and beans

The product was initially piloted in the Ashanti Region with a great deal of success informing its extension and application in the Western Region. It is however expected to be extended to all cocoa-growing communities in the country.

The Western South Manager of the Cocoa Health And Extension Division, Samuel Ankamah Asare in an interview said the training was to inform the farmers and officers responsible for the spraying of the anti-capsid insecticide to become more conversant with the instructions and the need for them to adhere to the instructions on the usage of the product for maximum yield in cocoa per acre.

“the testimonies and results emanating from the application of the product is amazing, that`s the reason for  COCOBOD procuring the product for its mass spraying exercise, and that farmers will have it applied in their farmlands at no cost to them.”

He explained CHED is going to encourage the mass spraying teams to make sure it goes down well to the farms as far as cocoa production is concerned
Sales and Marketing Manager for Agri Plus, Stephen Appiah Yeboah avers the product had undergone ten-year research and testing and thus provides a perfect solution to fighting capsid, black pod diseases and other insect infestations in cocoa.

He disclosed that the product, unlike other insecticides, is environmentally friendlier with excellent knockdown and residual efficacy.

“We sat down through painstaking research that we wanted to come up with a product that will not only kill ‘akate’ but will be environmentally friendly but it will be healthy for the users, farmers and sprayers” Mr Appiah Yeboah explained.

Mr Appiah Yeboah added, “it supports the flowering of the cocoa plant, by isolating beneficial insects that support the natural reproduction of plants, and only attack the infectious ones.”

Mr Appiah Yeboah continued that the company has a team of technical and extension officers to compliment that of COCOBOD to enhance the application of the insecticides and its resulting outcome.

“What we have as a strategy is to work in line with the structure of COCOBOD to ensure that the dose rate is gotten right. We have our extension agents who work with the extension officers of COCOBOD and the communities, engage with the farmers, educate them on the application of this product” he said.

Transform Akate is a trademark for ISOCLAST Active, a new foliar-applied sap-feeding insecticide for control of a wide range of sap-feeding pests, is being manufactured Corteva Agriscience.