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Ghana farmers struggle to cope with European vegetable ban
Farming communities in the Eastern region of Ghana are struggling to cope following the ban on the export of some vegetables to Europe.
According to farmers in these communities, the inability to export is making it difficult for them to raise money to take care of their families.
Jobs have been lost, farmlands have been left bare and unemployment is on the rise as a result of the problem.
The farmers are asking the government to quickly work at resolving issues with the European Union to get the ban lifted so normal life can return to the communities.
“At the end of every year, I get about 15,000 cedis from the export of the chili pepper. And additionally, hundreds of young people worked on the fields growing and harvesting the pepper. But all that is not possible now,” Kwasi Nyantakyi, a farmer based at Beregoro in the Eastern Region told Joy News in an interview.
He used to farm and export chili pepper, but that is not possible now. The situation is same in several other towns in the region including Suhum and Nsawam.
“Chili pepper has helped us here for a very long time. But pests and diseases are making it impossible to export them...We are hoping that they can reverse the ban quickly so we can continue to farm,” 22-year-old farmer at Apaa in the Fanteakwa District Kwesi Clement noted.
Officials of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture have been undertaking training sessions for farmers and field trials as part of procedures that the ministry hopes will eventually lead to the lifting of the ban.
But the farmers are frustrated about what they say is the slow pace of work. The farmers have diversified and tried to grow other crops but they say that is not as profitable as the chili pepper.
The farmers are calling for a speedy resolution of the concerns so the ban can be lifted.
Publication date: 10/12/2017
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