PJF initiative drives sector performance to 6.8%

Statistics from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) indicates that the Planting for Food and Jobs programme (PFJ) has resulted in a growth performance in the sector from 2.9 percent in 2016 to 6.8 percent in 2018.

The surge represents nearly four percent increase in the sector in the last three years. The growth performance has demonstrated the positive effects with regards to policy direction and interventions which is largely driven by crop production.

Government’s quest to invest in modernized agriculture mechanized system is expected to increase in yields and drives investment in the sector.

The Planting for Food and Job programme is a policy introduced to help address the declining growth of Ghana’s agricultural sector and improve on yields. It is a result of this that a clarion call was made for every Ghanaian to take farming as a full time or part time activity.

The programme is a five year long policy which is geared towards increasing food productivity and ensure food security for the country as well as reducing food import bills to the barest minimum. It is also an avenue to modernize agriculture and make it a source of employment for the teeming youths.

Currently, statistics from the Agriculture Ministry indicate that over 600,000 farmers have been registered under the programme. The programme was an initiative introduced to increase yields and get more of the youths to get employed in the sector.

It is anchored on five strategic pillars which aime at increasing productivity of food crops, ensure food security, raw materials for industry, reduce food import and increase export.

As at second quarter 2017, government has disbursed GHc365.60 million out of a total of Ghc700 million, representing 52 percent, towards the implementation of the various components of the programme. Despite this, some Civil Society Groups have urged government to increase funding towards the sector to improve yields.

By Dundas Whigham