General News of Monday, 11 September 2017
GhanaVeg, is an initiative of The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, has commenced trials of eight varieties of onions.
The trial is to ascertain the performance of onion cultivars in two different seasons in three zones of Ghana namely Northern, Middle and Southern Zones.
The varieties included two known varieties namely Bawku Red, Red Creole and six hybrid varieties made up of Orient, BGS 329, Neptune, Sivan, Prema and Dayo.
Mrs Sheila Assibey-Yeboah, Deputy Programme Leader of GhanaVeg, speaking to stakeholders at a trial field event at Legon, said it was to help find lasting solutions to some prevailing challenges in the onion value chain, since onions were in high demand.
She said large quantities of product are imported into the country from Niger and Burkina Faso on a constant basis, even though there is a huge potential to grow good quality onions in the country.
Mrs Assibey-Yeboah said GhanaVeg required the services of researchers to independently conduct onion variety trials in selected locations in Ghana, and to share such information with stakeholders.
She said the trials were to gather data on yield and other agronomic parameters of onion cultivars tested in two different seasons in the three zones of the country.
Mrs Assibey-Yeboah said it was also to use the data to advise farmers on the performance of the varieties for them to take decision on their own.
She said currently the trails were ongoing in Tamale, Ashiaman and Keta.
Professor Frank Kumagah, Senior Lecturer, Crop Science Department, University of Ghana and a leader Researcher, told the GNA that the trial was to advice stakeholders especially farmers on some of the performing varieties.
He said the trials was to see the performance these varieties in the regions and data collected on yield, tolerance to disease and pest conditions in the local environment and general adaptability and other parameters.
Professor Kumagah said it has been observed that some of the varieties with a certain colour were more attractive to consumers than others.
It was also to know if possible climatic data on precipitation and temperature (min-max), description of soil type.