Tech-MODE in Ghana Introduction
Ghana is a low-income country with a population of twenty-two million people and about a third of the population living below the poverty line (www.cia.gov/cia/publications/ factbook/geos/gh.html). Agriculture remains the main economic activity in Ghana and it is the source of livelihood for about 60% of the workforce (The Ghana ICT for Acceler¬ated Development Policy, 2003). The agricultural sector also accounted for about 35% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 65% of labour force in 2001 (http://www.nations encyclopedia.com/Africa/Ghana-Economy.html). Consequently, like many developing countries in Africa and elsewhere, agriculture plays a pivotal role in Ghana’s economy and by association Agricultural Research and Development (AR&D) is extremely impor¬tant.
Most people involved in agriculture in Ghana are subsistence farmers handling little or no marketable surplus. According to the Ghana Statistical Services ( GSS 2002) the inci-dence of poverty among food crop producers is the highest among the socio-economic groups. Recurrent drought in parts of the country, deforestation, soil erosion, pest and diseases and inadequate access to farm information among others play a major role in reduced agricultural yields. Government policy frameworks such as the Medium Term Agricultural Development Programme (MTADP) and the Agricultural Services Sector Investment Programme (AgSSIP) have all aimed at improving the agricultural sector.