Agriculture is the mainstay of the Atebubu-Amantin Municipal economy. It employs about 70% of the economically active labor force. Nearly every household in the Municipal is engaged in farming or agricultural related activity. Farming in the Municipal is largely carried out on small-scale basis. The average acreage cultivated ranges between 4-6 acres for all crops.
Despite its importance in the Municipal economy, much of the agricultural potentials in the MUNICIPAL remain unutilized. For instance, out of a total of 22,261 hectares of arable land, 3,167.6 hectares is currently utilized (DADU, 2014). This can be attributed to subsistence agriculture practiced by most of the farmers in the district. Currently a Plantation Company called African Plantation Sustainable Development Company has acquired over 5000 hectares of arable land and has started the plantation of various species of tree, this has increased the hectares of land under cultivation to 12345 hectares in the district. The irrigation potentials discovered in these seven localities of the district, namely, Jato-zongo, Abamba, New Konkrompe, Amafrom, Nyomoase and Kunkumfo are under development especially Nyomoase and Jato-zongo. The Kokofu dugout has also been given out on contract to be rehabilitated. This can encourage dry season farming
Crop Production MOFA
The soils in the area favor the production of a variety of crops. Currently, crops grown in commercial quantities in the Municipal include yam, cassava, maize and rice. The Municipal is particularly famous in the production of yam and cassava. The crop area for these crops attests to this fact (Refer to Table 1.16).
Statistics available indicate a marginal increase in cultivated area for Yam as can be seen from the table above. However, there is a decrease in cultivated area for Cassava from 10,295 HA to 10,247 in 2012 and 2015. The decrease in cultivated area for cassava can be attributed to limited number of processing factories hence low prices for cassava.
Post-harvest losses are a common phenomenon and represent a major challenge to farmers in the district. The incidence of post-harvest losses is particularly very high for certain crops like cassava, yam and the highly perishable ones like tomatoes and garden eggs, as shown in Table 8.
These losses have come about because of the general lack of knowledge about preservation techniques and the inadequacy of appropriate processing and storage facilities. The high incidence of post-harvest losses affects the incomes of farmers and has been a disincentive to farmers who want to embark on large scale production.
Some effort has over the years been made in the Municipal to add value to the agricultural produce through processing. Agro-processing is currently on a small scale. The Municipal has four agro-processing plants located in various places: gari production at Amantin; production of cassava flour at Watro; production of cassava syrup at Kokofu, and production of ‘Akpeteshie’, a local gin also at Kokofu.
This initiative is expected to increase job opportunities to people in the area as well as reduce the incidence of post-harvest losses in the district.
Some households are also into soap making and batik tie and dye making
Livestock and Poultry Production
Livestock production is one of the commercial agricultural activities in the district. Unlike crop production, livestock production is quite limited to some households. Livestock rearing is quite tedious, requiring so much time and attention. Production is on small scale though the area has favorable conditions (all year round availability of grass and water) for large scale livestock production.
Poultry production is mostly about chicken, and can be found in most households in the district. Chicken is widely reared than livestock because it is relatively easy raising them.
Both crop and livestock production in the Municipal is affected by the inadequate agricultural extension services. The MUNICIPAL has only 15 agricultural extension agents who attend to about 65,687 farmers, spread over 30 extension operational areas. This situation is compounded by the lack of motorbikes that hinders their mobility to most parts of the district.
Agricultural Land Acquisition
Land in the Municipal is vested in the stool and held in trust and on behalf of the people. For agricultural purposes, the land can easily be accessed by both natives and non-natives, and this is a great potential for agricultural development. In line with the customs and traditions of the area, non-natives in need of land for agricultural activities are required to approach the chief or the appropriate landlord with a token of drinks, a sheep or small amount of money for a parcel(s) of land.
Date Created : 11/23/2017 1:36:25 AM