2006-12-04 21:28:24This article has been read 797 times.
The Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (SARI) in Nyankpala has developed two new varieties of rice for mass cultivation in the Northern Region and in Tono in the Upper East Region.
The new rice varieties: Nerica I and Nerica II take between 95 days and 105 to reach maturity and have good taste. They have high yielding quality that would equal the perfumed rice on the markets and adds to the several variety of rice species the Institute had so far developed.
Dr. Wilson Dogbe, the Coordinator of SARI rice project, who said this during the Northern Region celebration of this year's farmers' day at Buipe in the West Gonja District, said the feat had been achieved through the collaboration with the West Africa Research Institute. The two varieties were developed by West Africa Research Institute (WARI) and Africa Rice Centre (ARC) in Cotonue-Benin and produced by the Tono irrigation at Navrongo.
He said the varieties could withstand the drought weather condition and were cheaper and affordable for the subsistent farmer to purchase. Nerica I is suitable for rain-fed cultivation while the Nerica II is ideal for irrigation purposes.
Mr. Zakaria Yakubu, District Chief Executive of Central Gonja, said a number of programmes had been put in place by the government to increase food productivity.
He mentioned the National Youth Employment Programme on agriculture, the Livestock Development, Food and Agricultural Budgetary Support, Food Crops Development and the Cashew Development Projects as some of the projects that sort to solve the youth unemployment in the district.
Mr. Zakaria expressed disappointment that the productive youth, especially males, default in the payment of loans given to them and appealed to them to pay back the loans. He advised the people against indiscrimate bush burning saying; "The harmattan has just set in and we need to be very careful about our activities to avoid the destruction of the vegetation cover".