Dear Minister of Agriculture
I am writing to you this morning to address the issue of the aging farmer population ratio in Ghana and the potential risks it poses to our food sector.
It has come to my attention that the rate of aging among our farmers is considerably high, adversely affecting the expansion of farms and crop yields.
In order to ensure Ghana’s food security for future generations, the growth rate of the aging farmers’ population must be a primary concern for all of us.
Furthermore, the unavailability of laborers who could be hired to work on farms has further exacerbated the situation, leaving aged farmers to face their challenges alone.
Moreover, local assemblies have failed to adequately protect farmers from exploitation by merchants or middlemen.
However, we have a significant number of young and energetic individuals who are currently serving prison sentences, essentially wasting their potential.
Therefore, I suggest that your department collaborate with the Ministry of Interior to explore the possibility of utilizing the services of prisoners for farming, with the goal of providing food for Ghanaians.
This initiative can be specifically targeted at programs such as the School Feeding Program and our poultry sector.
The focus of this collaboration should be on cultivating crops such as maize, cowpea, soybeans, rice, yam, and vegetables under the “Planting for Food and Jobs” program.
The produce grown by the prisoners would primarily be used to feed the prisoners themselves and other wards of the state, such as residents of orphanages and asylums. Secondly, any surplus could be sold to generate profits for the state.
Additionally, this approach would address the prisoners’ concerns about the quality of the food they are currently provided. Once the produce is harvested, the government would assume complete control over its distribution, ensuring proper management through the buffer stock system.
Thank you for your attention to this matter, and I look forward to your positive response.
President, Ghana Agricultural and Rural Development Journalists Association (GARDJA)