About 90 percent of total active labour force in the district is engaged in agricultural production as indicated earlier. A significant proportion (87.4%) of households in the district is engaged in agriculture. The dominant agricultural activities engaged by agricultural households in the district are crop farming, tree planting, livestock rearing and fish farming. The dominant agricultural activity engaged by households is crop farming and the next is livestock rearing (figure 15).
The structure of agriculture in the district is peasant in nature and the farmers rely on traditional labour intensive method of production and the weather. Livestock and poultry production is done on small scale at times under free range system.
Major Problems of the Agricultural Sector
The major problems confronting the agricultural sector in the district are listed below:
- Poor and inadequate road network
- Low price for farm produce.
- Lack of credit facilities for farmers.
- Inability to afford appropriate agro-processing machinery.
- Lack of storage facilities.
- Lack of transport for agricultural technical staff.
- Erratic weather conditions
- Low level irrigation development.
- Misuse of agro-chemicals by farmers.
- Poor linkage of farmers to buyers, processors and other stakeholders.
- In the 21st Century, agriculture remains fundamental to economic growth, poverty alleviation, and environmental sustainability (World Bank/FAO/IFAD, 2009). Agriculture is central to reducing poverty and food insecurity, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa (IFAD 2001; World Bank 2007). Agriculture is an important economic activity in Ghana, involving majority of the economically active population. It supports the economy in foreign exchange earnings and contribution to gross domestic product (Ghana Statistical Service, 2013).
Agriculture in the District is basically weather dependent, peasant and subsistent. There are however, few commercial farms in the District which are basically tree cash crops. Limited availability data is hampering improvement of the fortunes of the sector. This chapter would serve as a guide for the implementation and execution of agricultural policies and
programmes for an improved agricultural sector in the District. This chapter seeks to analyze socio-demographic characteristics of agricultural households and types of farming activities in Sekyere Afram Plains District.
Households in Agriculture
The question on agriculture sought to find out whether any member of the household was engaged in agricultural activity i.e. involved in crop farming, tree planting, fish farming or animal rearing at the time of the census. In 2010 PHC, a household was considered as an agriculture household if at least one member engaged in one agricultural activity or another. Table 7.1 shows that 87.4 percent of all households in the Sekyere Afram Plains district are agricultural households. Non-agricultural households constitute 12.6 percent.
Agricultural households 87.4%
Non- agricultural households 12.6%
Types of Farming Activities
Table 7.1 shows that a higher proportion of agricultural households in the district are engaged in crop farming (98.2 %), followed by livestock rearing (52.7%) and tree planting (0.8%). A very small proportion of the agricultural households engaged in fish farming.
Types of Livestock, Numbers and Keepers
Table 7.2 shows the types of livestock reared in the District and their keepers. A total of 117,218 livestock is reared in the District. Chicken accounts for more than one-half (53.1%) of all livestock kept in the entire District followed by goat (15.3%) and sheep (10.3%). The top three ruminants are goats (15.3%), followed closely by sheep and cattle; 10.3 percent and 4.5 percent respectively.
Table 7.2 shows that other notable animals reared in the District are guinea fowl (9.4%) and cattle (4.5%). There is a total of 4,913 livestock keepers in the District and on the average, there are 24 animals per keeper. However more than one third (40.4%) of keepers are involved in chicken keeping. A little over one-quarter (26.3%) of households is involved in goats keeping and 17.9 percent in sheep rearing. Fish farming and beehives has 343 and 138 average animal per keeper respectively. This is followed by the average keeper per cattle (63).
Date Created : 11/24/2017 1:36:03 AM