The Ministry of Food and Agriculture cannot depend on some of its present database for planning and operational purposes because the data is not current.
The sector Minister, Alhaji Mohammed Muniru, said the last time the ministry carried out an agricultural census in the country was almost four decades ago.
The Minister told a Poverty Reduction Strategy Committee hearing in Parliament that the data was collected 37 years ago and was no longer relevant to the planning and operations of the sector.
“It is important as a country we go back and resource the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to conduct agric census to enhance productivity of agriculture,” he said.
Alhaji Muniru came to Parliament to brief the people’s representatives on measures taken by the ministry to implement the Ghana Shared Growth and Development Agenda (GSGDA), 2010 – 2013.
The hearing was also to determine if the targets set and incorporated in the GSGDA for 2010-2013 had been met.
Alhaji Muniru said an agricultural census would enable the ministry to determine the extent of the loss of the nation’s forest cover, the quantum of arable lands and the current levels of soil fertility.
He said such census would also help the ministry to know the major crops cultivated nationwide and the potential of any new crop.
The Minister said the ministry was collaborating with the Ghana Agricultural Sector Investment Programme (GASIP) to provide solutions to problems brought forward by farmer-based organisations.