The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has partnered with Beft Agro Limited and Demeter Ghana Limited, two specialist importers of fertilisers to Ghana, to provide cocoa farmers in the Western Region with a new product, called Omya Calciprill, to tackle soil acidity.
Studies have shown that soil acidity is one of the major constraints on cocoa cultivation, and further limits the levels of key nutrients such as Nitrogen, Potassium and Phosphorus. This leads to low cocoa yields, thereby affecting farmers.
Speaking at a two-day seminar held at Kejebril in Western South last week, Mr. Samuel Ankamah, Western South Regional Manager of Cocoa Health and Extension Division (CHED) stated that: “We expect Calciprill to make a big difference in the lives of our farmers. We are looking forward to working with Beft Agro and Demeter Ghana to educate the farmers about the issues of soil acidity in the Western Region. This has been a long-awaited dream that has come to pass”.
Mr. Ankamah noted: “Western South, which has been classified as a high rainfall zone with its associated high acidity level, will now rub shoulders with giant in the areas of productivity”.
Omya Calciprill is a high-quality soil conditioner from Germany that is used to rid soils of any acidity and allows for yields to increase.
Mr. Nash Sulemena, Head of Fertilisers at Demeter Ghana, on his part said: “From the studies that we have done across Ghana, it appears that the biggest limiting factor on yield increase in cocoa is the high levels of acidity in the soil”.
Frank Boateng, Co-founder of Beft Agro Limited, said the Western Region has long had an issue with soil acidity, which has severely hampered cocoa farmers’ yields.
“We are very excited to introduce cocoa farmers to Omya Calciprill, as we know what a positive impact it will have on their lives,” Mr. Boateng stressed.
Studies conducted by the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG) over the last two years have proven that Omya Calciprill can boost yields by 70%.
With these results, COCOBOD has further requested that Beft Agro Ltd. and Demeter Ghana Ltd. conduct training seminars in conjunction with CHED for farmers and Cocoa Extension officers in the Western South Region.
Demeter Ghana Limited was founded in 2014 and is a leading importer of agricultural inputs; including fertiliser, seeds and inoculants. It has been supplying to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture for the last three years and is the exclusive importer of Calciprill to Ghana.
Beft Agro Limited is an importer and distributor of fertilisers, and has worked closely with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and COCOBOD for many years. Beft Agro Limited saw the benefit of Calciprill and got Cocobod to conduct trials on the product.