What’s the most fundamental need of humans; food, water or sex? Be it highly arguable, one thing is certain. They are necessities of life and for those of us who love food, a day without it would mean torture. So as the nation salutes farmers and fishermen, it’s only proper for the self-acclaimed foodians to say a very big Ayekoo to our well-deserved farmers and fishermen.
But, in Ghana is food reliable, accessible and affordable to all? One sunny morning as I went about my usual Saturday morning shopping at the Nungua market, I saw an unusual type of ginger; it looked really huge without a single grain of sand around it, unlike the local ones. So, I quickly asked the lady who was selling it, if it was local. She said ‘Yes’, so I asked which part of the country it was cultivated and she said China. To me that was not funny. Approximately, 95% of products sold in most supermarkets across Ghana are imported. Shall we allow same in our local markets too? The import rate of Ghana, a country believed to be sovereign, is scary.
The imported products compete with local ones thereby significantly stifling the performance of the agriculture sector while leaving the local farmers to continuously wallow in poverty. No wonder agric hardly appeals to the youth.
Another nation-wrecking behaviour is the citizenry’s taste and preference. For example, most Ghanaians would prefer foreign polished rice to the highly nutritious local rice any day for the simple reason that it appeals to their taste buds. It is a foreign acquired taste that most Ghanaians have adapted to. So, import for foreign rice is always high. Literally, we fought to free ourselves from an oppressor and run back to him for food. Aside the shame, don’t expect it for free. It would come at a huge cost. After all, anyone who feeds you, owns you.
Also, GMOs are being considered. You control the seed, you control the food and the people become puppets at your disposal.
The fact of the matter is that some of the fertilizers being used in cultivating the crops are shortening the shelf life of the crops. In an interview, Adamkie Dede, a market woman who sells onions at the Kaneshi market, disclosed that she goes all the way to Abidjan to buy her onions because the local ones get rotten easily.
Adamkie Dede seated in her shop
Adamkie Dede’s imported onions from Abidjan.
Food sovereignty is crucial to the growth of every nation and it is the responsibility of every Ghanaian to ensure that we eat what we produce and produce what we eat. One home, one garden!
On the occasion of the 32nd Farmers’ Day, we salute our farmers for breaking their backs day-in day-out to serve the motherland.
By Ayerkie Narnor|3news.com|Ghana