Sep. 18, 2012
The Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG), in collaboration with Louis Dreyfus Commodities (LDC), has launched a new fertilizer dubbed ‘Cocoa Master’.
The product, which had been tested and tried by the CRIG for the past three years and approved by the Cocoa Board, was designed to increase pod formation, maximize yields and enhance income generation by cocoa farmers.
Addressing a cross-section of the public during the launch, the Managing Director of Louis Dreyfus Commodities, Mr Antone Sauvage, said plans were far advanced for his company to build a fertilizer plant in Ghana this year.
This, he explained, would enable the LDC “manufacture the Cocoa Master in Ghana next year as a way of enhancing the fertilizer industry.”
Commending the Management of the CRIG for their collaboration, Mr Sauvage pointed out that it was their collaboration that made it possible for the product, which is blended with “Nitrogen and Boron to match the requirements of cocoa trees in Ghana”.
He said so far, the product had been accepted by stakeholders of the cocoa industry across the country and, therefore, encouraged licensed cocoa buying companies and accredited cocoa input dealers to distribute the new Master Cocoa fertilizer to cocoa farmers.
According to Mr. Sauvage, his company had, since 1946, sold cocoa fertilizer in Cote d’ Ivoire and assured cocoa farmers that the company was more determined to “develop our range of coca inputs in Ghana for the next 50 years as we achieved in Cote d’ Ivoire and other African countries.”
In an address read on his behalf, the Minister of Food and Agriculture, Mr KwasiAhwoi, said that his ministry was on course to modernize agriculture.
He pointed out that it was part of the strategy that had made the government to engage the private sector through the public partnership framework to establish commodity value chains such as fertilizer and other agricultural inputs and chemicals.
According to Mr. Ahwoi, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture had made provision to subsidise 176,000 metric tonnes of fertilizer and 151 metric tonnes of certified seeds at a total cost of GH124.1 million for the 2012 crop season.
This, he noted, would enhance agriculture production and income generation among farmers across the country.
Dr. K. Frimpong from the CRIG, who launched the Master Cocoa fertilizer, also commended the management of the LDC for their initiative and assured the LDC of their support as the LDC made inroads into the agricultural industry.