The Public Relations Officer for the Ministry of Agriculture has advised soya bean farmers to desist from selling their products just to foreign buyers to earn more money.

According to Bagbara Tanko, denying local buyers soya bean, aside from being unpatriotic, will affect the economy in the long run.

Speaking on JoyNews’ AM Show on Tuesday, he said, “This should not be allowed to continue to happen because the taxpayers’ money is used to subsidise fertilisers for production.

“We have a situation where patriotism to thrown to the wind, and we want to fill our pocket. When you get to the farm gates, they will tell you the farmers prefer these foreigners because they think they offer high prices. But little do they know that they are doing a collective bad to the nation.”

His comment follows a JoyNews hotline documentary dubbed ‘Broken Chain’ by Prince Appiah has revealed that the local poultry industry is now hanging on hopes because there is a short supply of soya bean and maize, which are the main components of livestock feed.

The shortage in supply of soya beans to the local poultry industry is not a result of low production levels for soya beans. But instead the sale of soya beans to foreign buyers.

According to Bagbara Tanko, some farmers are chasing money; therefore, they have thrown caution to the wind and are being unpatriotic.

Meanwhile, Mr Tanko said the Ministry has procured more machines to increase soya bean production in the country.

According to him, the Ministry continuously makes an effort because cultivating soya is so tedious and requires mechanisation.

“The issue has to do with using improved seeds and getting as many farmers to cultivate soya. When you produce, at the end of the day, if you cannot harvest it properly, it will all shatter, and all your efforts will amount to nothing.

As a result, the Ministry through the Engineering Services Directorate has procured handheld machines, pressures, rippers, etc.”

Interacting with host, Benjamin Akakpo, Bagbara Tanko also noted that the Agric. Ministry is looking at ways to improve extension service delivery.

According to him, the gap between an extension farmer and farmers has been reduced.

“Gone are days that we used to have just one extension officer is to 1900 farmers. The gap has been closed. We now have one extension office to the rate of about 600. The standard rate should have been 1:500 farmers.”

With the measures put in place, Mr Tanko says the Ministry is “certain that we are going to increase production.”