Food prices likely to shoot up

Food prices likely to shoot up
Source: Ghana | | Oswald K. Azumah
Date: 17-10-2017 Time: 10:10:51:am
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Prices of major staples like maize are likely to shoot up following the destruction caused by the invasion of fall armyworms. 

Joy News’ Justice Baidoo spoke to some farmers in Bimbila in the Northern Region, a major farming community and found out that unlike previous years when they get a plentiful harvest, the invasion of fall armyworms has threatened to destroy their livelihood and all they have worked for this year. 

Wumbe Alhassan, a farmer who spoke to the reporter said, he spent almost GHȻ2,000 to cultivate a 10-acre piece of land only for his work to be ruined by the armyworms. He lamented on where his livelihood will come from.

Since March this year, the pests have invaded 120 hectares of farmland. 

The Nana Akufo- Addo-led government has pledged a fight back with the pesticide control program but the farmers fear the ratio of Extension Officers to farmlands, could thwart the program. 

Fauzia Zenabu, who is a retailer of maize at a market in Accra says they are also feeling the effect of the pest invasion. 
“Last year we were buying a bowl of maize for GHȻ2 but this year, it is GHȻ3”, she said. She also fears the price may shoot up to GHȻ7 in Accra. 

The farmers and traders are calling for any response to the situation to be now, rather than later. 

This, however, contrasts with what the Acting Chief Executive of National Food and Buffer Stock Company, Abdul Wahab told Joy Business that there is bumper harvest and a bigger harvest is expected in the remaining months of the year.

Abdul Wahab said the problem is rather a lack of ready market which forces farmers in the north to sell their produce to neighboring countries. 

Therefore, they are working to expand storage facilities so they can swipe the harvest from the farmers before they look elsewhere, he said.

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