• The PFAG is warning of a food shortage likely to hit next year
• They believe the cost of farming inputs still remains high and this will affect food prices
• Former President Mahama has also made a similar assertion
The Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana has warned the country is likely to experience food shortages in 2022.
According to Charles Nyaaba, Head of Programmes of the Association, the increase in food prices already being experienced across the country this year is expected to worsen next year.
In an interaction with JoyNews, Nyaaba said government has to critically implement stringent structural measures aimed at mitigating the food price hikes.
“This year, we have had serious challenges with fertilizer, especially in the Northern Part of the country. You know, in the North, the land is not fertile, so if you farm without applying fertilizer, the likelihood of recording very low yield is very high.”
He continued, “I must admit that in the last few years, the government has been doing well with supplying fertilizer, but this year the situation has been worse. As a result, many farmers can’t get fertilizers to apply.
“The subsidies cover both NPK and Urea, and as we speak, there’s no company that supplies even a single truck of Urea because they claim there’s a world price hike and government also owe them for what they supplied in 2020. So, the situation is affecting yield,” Nyaaba explained.
He pointed that although farmers have been experiencing stable weather conditions this year, the cost of farm inputs still remains high, hence, output will culminate in food price hikes.
“If they will address these challenges, it should be now so that those doing the minor season farming can have the inputs. Next year, apart from the price hike, if the outstanding issues are not addressed, we are likely to see the situation going worse.”
The caution comes on the back of an earlier statement made by former president John Mahama during his ‘Thank You’ tour.
The former president asserted that persistent issues surrounding the roll out of the Planting for Food and Jobs initiative of government can be attributed to the lack of funding.
“I have a brother who is into farming, and he tells me government is yet to supply farmers with fertilizer this year, and so he had to buy it himself,” John Mahama said told a Sunyani-based radio station during his tour.
“The cost is very high, which has forced him to reduce the acres he is planting from 300 to 80, and the effects of this are that there could be famine in Ghana next year because the planting for food and jobs has failed,” he added.
But Agriculture Minister, Owusu Afriyie-Akoto has described the claims of a food shortage and a lack of supply of fertilizer as false.
He says the country is, at the moment, experiencing a bumper harvest with export yields to neighbouring countries as a result of government’s investments in the agriculture sector.