GHANA CAN BE CLASSIFIED AS CONSISTING of three main agriculture zones: the forest vegetation zone of parts of the Western, Eastern, Ashanti, Brong Ahafo and Volta Regions; the northern savannah vegetation zone that includes the Upper East, Upper West and Northern Region; and the coastal savannah which includes mainly the Central, Greater Accra and parts of Volta Region.
The northern savannah zone is the largest agriculture zone. Most of the nations supply of rice, millet, sorghum, yam, tomatoes, cattle, sheep, goat and cotton are grown in that region. In recent times, mango and ostrich farms have also gained footholds in the northern zone.
The coastal savannah is notable for rice, maize, cassava, vegetables, sugar cane, mangos and coconut, as well as livestock. Sweet potato and soybean crops are viable in this agro-ecological zone, under irrigation. The lower part of this zone is drained by the River Volta. Together with other streams and lagoons, these water resources present opportunities for fish farming and aquaculture. In the forest zone where rainfall is plentiful, cocoa, coffee, oil palm, cashew, rubber, plantain, banana and citrus crops are mostly cultivated in these areas.
The major strengths of the agricultural sector include a diversity of commodities, well-endowed drainage basin, a well-established agricultural research system and a relative proximity to the European market. Agricultural production is generally dependent on rainfall, although an estimated 6,000 farm enterprises nationwide are using some means of irrigation.
For a potential irrigable land area of 346,000 ha, only 10,000 ha is developed, expected to increase to 20,605 ha in 2015. Growth in the agricultural sector was 3.4% in 2013 and predicted to grow at 4.9% in 2015; 5.2% in 2016; and 4.2% in 2017. The sectors contribution to GDP in 2013 was 21.3%.
Other leading non-traditional export products are fresh or chilled tuna fish, shea and cashew nuts, yams, banana and pineapples. Other leading processed agricultural export products were processed tuna, other prepared fish, cut fresh pineapples, and tomato paste.
Investment opportunities exist for producers and processing companies in the following areas:
* Production of horticultural products (e.g. cereals, roots/tubers, industrial crops) for national, regional and EU markets
* Production of value-added cocoa, coffee and cotton products
* Development of private irrigation...