The Ministry of Food and Agriculture has taken yet another giant step towards increasing local production and export of vegetables through modern technology.
The Ministry is further collaborating with its partners in Israel to provide state-of-the-art training, as well as opportunities for young graduates in agripreneurship and agribusiness.
The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Hon. Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, who disclosed during an orientation programme for 50 graduates in agriculture who are expected to leave Ghana for Israel, said government was committed towards implementing policies and programmes that would ensure the modernization of the agricultural sector and create jobs for the teeming youth of this country.
The programme also marked the formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Ghana and Israel, committing the two countries to a long term agreement towards the ‘Co-Operation and Training of Students in Educational Projects in Agriculture.’
Hon. Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto pointed out that amongst the programmes would be the establishment of three satellites training centres in the Greater Accra and Ashanti Regions for the training and production of Greenhouse Vegetable Farming.
The satellite centres, he said, were located at Kaasoa, Akomadan and Dawhenya, adding that these centres would form the nucleus of commercial vegetable farming in the country.
Whilst the centres at Dawhenya and Kaasoa are in full operation, that of Akomadan in the Ashanti Region is expected to be completed by the end of next year.
The Minister said the three facilities would offer training to students in modern agricultural practices, particularly in area of Greenhouse Vegetable production.
“This programme is expected to propel Ghana to become one of the biggest producer and exporter of vegetables in the sub-saharan region,” the Minister said, adding that it is the commitment of government to change the face of agriculture through its flagship “Planting for Food and Jobs” (PFJ) programme.
Partnership with Israel
The Minister of Food and Agriculture observed that Ghana is hoping to tap from the vast knowledge and experience of Israel in the use of modern technology for the development of agriculture.
Hon. Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto said the MOU will cement the already fruitful collaboration between the two countries in the development of the agricultural sector.
Under the agreement, Agro Studies The International Centre For Agricultural Studies in Israel, will offer an 11-months paid internship for groups of Ghanaian graduates in Israel.
Throughout the studies, the participants will be exposed to various agricultural technologies.
They will also receive monthly stipends as part of their training and are expected to make enough savings from their monthly earnings to set up their own Greenhouse farms upon return.
“This programme is very dear to the heart of the President; we believe it is a major step towards achieving our campaign promise of revamping the economy of this country through agriculture” He said.
The Minister of Food and Agriculture signed the MOU on behalf of Government of Ghana whilst the Israeli Ambassador to Ghana, His Excellency Ami Mehl and CEO of Agro Studies The International Center For Agricultural Studies, Mr. Yaron Tamir, signed on behalf of the Israeli Government.
Meanwhile, the selection interview begins today, Tuesday June 19, 2018 and qualified students are expected to leave Ghana on September 21, 2018.