Ms. Alberta Nana Akyaa Akosa, Executive Director of Agrihouse, a non-governmental agricultural organisation, has said its Livestock, Poultry, and Fisheries Tradeshow (LiPF) has engaged over 50,000 sub holder farmers in animal agriculture in two years.
She said a significant percentage of participants in the first and second editions of the show expressed interest in animal agriculture which was still in business from skills and lessons acquired.
Ms Akosa said the needs of participants over the years had aided the planning committee to add and build on the training component of the event.
She said this at the launch of the third edition of the Livestock, Poultry, and Fisheries Tradeshow (LiPF) at the Nungua Farms in Accra, on the theme, "We Move! W) Yaa."
Ms Akosa said the main event would be a two-day training and exhibition tradeshow, slated for May 21 - May 22, in partnership with the United State Department of Agriculture (UNDA) - Ghana Poultry Project (GPP), Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), and National Farmers and Fishermen Award Winner's Association of Ghana (NFFAWAG).
Ms Akosa said the third edition of LiPF would afford participants, including, livestock, poultry, and fisheries farmers and exhibitors, tertiary and financial institutions, agriculture and media organizations, and development partners, a learning environment to explore deeper ways to take advantage of opportunities in the animal agricultural sector.
She said LiPF had come at an opportune time to inform and educate participants about alternative means to create jobs and make additional income, especially, in the animal agricultural sector, with COVID-19 creating job losses.
"LiFP is a relevant intervention and it is now more relevant as it seeks to build resilience and confidence in individuals who have lost their source of income and are looking for alternate means in these times.
" It is also here to encourage people who are passionate and interested in the animal agricultural sector, to let them see the multiple opportunities they can take advantage of. Even with government and private sector interventions, the animal agricultural sector still has several areas of opportunities that have not been tapped into.
"These are the areas we are aiming to highlight this year," she said.
As organizing partners, Ms. Carianne De Boer, Chief of Party of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Ghana Poultry Project (GPP), said development partners and agri-stakeholders must ensure that public and donor investor policies truly reflected the resilient and prosperous future they envisioned for the agricultural sector by taking a fresh look at youth in agriculture programmes, and considering more robust approaches to enabling the youth to gain access to knowledge, finance, assets, and modern technology.
She said to engage and empower young people in agriculture, the sector must address young people's aspirations and expectations, emphasizing that young people were very interested in modernized approaches to agriculture, where they could utilize their mobile phones, new techniques, and computers to manage their poultry.
Madam Mavis Afutu, Deputy Director Animal Production Directorate, MoFA, said the animal farming sector provided lots of opportunity for investors and persons who desired to venture into the practice.
She said the Rearing for Food and Jobs initiative introduced by the government had improved the sector remarkably and added to the supply of protein and nutritious food for the nation.
"The Animal Production Directorate entreated all stakeholders to participate fully in the 3rd edition of the tradeshow," she said.
Madam Amen Bruce-Ghartey, Farm Manager Nungua Farms, commended Agrihouse for the initiative and assured that there would be an exhibition, setups of piggery, rabbitry, grasscutter farming amongst other animal farms to aid in training and capacity building of participants.
Mr Mohammed Ali, Head of Marketing and Communication, Agriculture Development Bank, said the Bank, as part of its initiative to serve farmers better, had provided an agric desk in all of its branches to attend to farmers and assured their participation in the main event in May.