Massey Ferguson has launched a new range of machinery to boost agricultural production and food security in the country, the Managing Director of Mechanical Lloyd Plc, Mrs Kalysta Darko-O’Kell, said the introduction of the Massey Ferguson range of products was to help reduce the workload of farmers on their farms.
The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Dr Owusu Akoto Afriyie during the launch of Massey Ferguson’s new range of farm machinery in Accra yesterday said that the current and emerging constraints facing the country’s agriculture sector need measures to intensify the adoption of mechanisation to enhance food production and security.
He said the erratic rainfall, over-aged farmer population, demand for high-quality products from the market and low productivity emphasised the need for innovation through mechanization to boost food production.
Dr Akoto stated this in a speech read on his behalf by the Deputy Director of the Agricultural Engineering Services Directorate of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), Patrick O. Aboagye, during the launch of Massey Ferguson’s new range of farm machinery in Accra yesterday.
Massey Ferguson products in Ghana are solely distributed and sold by Mechanical Lloyd Plc.
Speaking on the topic “Importance of Agricultural Mechanisation in ensuring Food Security in Ghana,” the minister said the subject of mechanisation should be revisited with a new holistic approach.
“Presently, there is recognition from stakeholders for the need to increase mechanisation rights across the agricultural value chain from land preparation, planting, crop maintenance through harvesting and handling of produce.”
He noted that; “This will surely lead to more commercially viable farms and increased productivity of food crops in the country.
He said approximately 70 per cent of farmers in the country operated at a small-scale level with traditional tools such as hoe and cutlass producing about 65 per cent of agricultural output.
Dr Akoto disclosed that out of the eight million hectares of land suitable for mechanised farming, barely 30 per cent of this productive land had been cultivated.
To address the challenge of mechanization, he said the government of 2007 introduced the Agricultural Mechanisation Service Enterprise Centers with the aim to assist the private sector to take a lead role in rendering well organised and commercially viable mechanised services to farmers.
Dr Akoto commended Mechanical Lloyd Plc for the role the company had played over the past 50 years to promote agriculture in the country by distributing Massey Ferguson’s range of agricultural machinery.
“The government will continue to partner giants the likes of Mechanical Lloyd Company to deliver efficient and smart agricultural technologies to all categories of farmers in Ghana,” he said.
Mrs Kalysta Darko-O’Kell, added that Massey Ferguson’s new products included harrows, plowing machines, planters, sprayers, trailers, material handling, and hay and forage.
“All these implements and machines have been developed to allow the farmer to work better and produce more,” Mrs O’Kell said, adding that the Massey Ferguson tractor could also serve as a generator.
She said the first five customers who bought the Massey Ferguson would receive a harrow for free.
The Business Development for Africa for AGCO, the owners of Massey Ferguson, said the objective of AGCO was to introduce innovative product to enhance productivity for farmers.