Kpando District lies within latitudes 6 º20’N and 7 º0.5’N, and Longitude 0 º17’E. It shares boundaries with Biakoye District in the North, Hohoe District to the East, and South Dayi District in the South.The 2000 population census suggests that the district population increased by 15% over 1984 count which brings the total population to 74,595%. The district capital, Kpando is 90 km form Ho, the Regional capital and 240 km to 256 km to the Tema Harbour and the Accra Airpot. The district covers a total land area of 820 square. The district falls within the tropical zonehence it is characterized by two rainy seasons, the major one occurs from mid-April to early July and the minor from September to November. The average annual rainfall ranges from 900mm to 1,300mm with considerable variations with the time of onset, duration and intensity.
The district economy is basically dominated by agricultural activities and it is estimated that about 62% of the active population is engaged either directly or indirectly in this sector. The climatic condition of the district favourably supports variety of crops and livestock production. The potential for investment in Agriculture is enormous, that is, the Volta lake that covers 80 Km of coastal line that covers the whole of the western river boundary while the Dayi River to the east and its basin provides a prime arable land for the cultivation of a variety of food crops, tree crops and vegetables all year round and also fishing farming. The major exportable crops are papaya, pineapple (both conventional and organic) to the German markets, mango and chili pepper to the EU markets. The presence of road infrastructure and a pack house for cold storage of fruits and vegetables makes transportation to the ports easy.
PHYSICAL AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENT
Location and Size
The district lies within latitudes 6 º20’N and 7 º0.5’N, and Longitude 0 º17’E. It shares boundaries with Biakoye District in the North, Hohoe District to the East, and the newly created South Dayi District in the South. The Volta Lake which stretches over 80km of the costal line, demarcates the Western boundary. The district covers a total land area of 820 square kilometers representing 4.5% of the Volta Region with almost 30% of the land being submerged by the Volta Lake.
Topography and Drainage
The most conspicuous physical features of the district are the Akwapim-Togo-Atakora ranges which is at the eastern corridor between Ho and Kpando Districts. The district is dotted with scattered hills and ranges of varied length and height resulting in an undulating feature of the district. The major hills are Anfoega, Awate, Botoku and Wusuta. The highest point in the district is 1,250 ft and is located alone the Volta Lake around Awate and Botoku.
The Volta Lake and the River Dayi are the major water bodies that drain the district. There are however, other numerous streams and rivulets that can be found throughout the district but these are perennial.
The Volta Lake runs virtually along the whole of the western boundary while the Dayi River is to the east and its basin provides a prime farming land for the cultivation of a variety of food crop and vegetables.
Geology and Soils
The district is generally underlined with Buem Volcanic rocks stretching through to Jasikan and Kadjebi District. The implication of this type of rock is that it supports surface supplies of underground water and the surface supplies are fairly good while prospects for boreholes ranges from fair to good. The major soil types developed from this parent rock in the district are the Savannah Ochrosols (reddish, lightly acid; more nutrient) “Oxysol” (heavily drained; yellowish; less nutrient and ground water laterites.
This is characterized by sandy loam type of soil with local adaptation. Along the lake and the River Dayi, the alluvial silt loams predominate. The terrain is mostly steep and access is difficult. Inventories made to classify soils according to their general and chemical characteristics indicate that the soils in the district are of low fertility and low moisture holding capacity which has serious implication for agricultural crop development.
The district falls within the tropical zone, and it is generally influenced by the South West Monsoons wind from the South Atlantic Ocean and the dry Harmattan winds from the Sahara. The district is therefore characterized by two rainy seasons, the major one occurs from mid-April to early July and the minor from September to November. The beginning and the end of the rainy seasons are not very distinct and there is sometime rainfall even during the dry period. The average annual rainfall ranges from 900mm to 1,300mm with considerable variations with the time of onset, duration and intensity over the years. The double maxima rainfall pattern experienced put the district at comparative advantage in food production and food security. It is an opportunity for the farmers to increase their income annually as a result of the two cropping seasons unlike other areas in the country with single season rainfall. Below are the rainfall figures for the district from 2005 to 2010.
Monthly Rainfall (mm) for Kpando
Source: Ghana Meteorological Agency, 2010.
The mean annual temperature is about 27 º Celsius whereas the daily means ranges from 22 º to 33 ºCelsius. The months of February and March are generally the hottest while July and August are relatively cooler. The average relative humidity is 80%. Even though the climatic condition of the district may predispose it to high rate of malaria and diarrhoea, the average temperature equally absolves the district from the incidence of Cerebra-Spinal-Meningitis (CSM) diseases.
The vegetation of the district is characterized by a mix of guinea savannah woodland and semi-deciduous forest. The savannah woodlands consist of grass with scattered trees like acacia, bamboo and baobabs. These dots the River Dayi Basin. The semi-deciduous forests are found on the slopes of the Akwapim-Togo-Attakora ranges with many trees species are also found in high forest zone, such as Antiaris toxicaria, (Odum) and Oil palm. Much of the forest has however been lost to the menace of inappropriate farming practices and of excessive lumbering and bush fires.
Condition of Natural Environment
The creation of the Volta Lake in 1965 coupled with the construction of the lake
Port attracted many migrant fishermen. This has affected the ecological balance of the district in several ways resulting among others to the submerging of about 30% of the land surface by the lake. This in one way or the other had equally caused the extinction of endangered animals and plants species in the district.
Human kind’s search for survival has led to the exploitation of the existing tropical forest though a mixture of hunting, gathering and shifting agriculture. Extensive clearing of land for agriculture and the extraction of lumber for the construction and fuel wood had reduced the vegetative cover of the district. Most of the natural environmental activities included bush burning charcoal burning and other domestic use. The natural environment is therefore threatened by desertification due to annual bush fires, soil erosion, deforestation and land degradation.
Condition that Built Environment
Several factors may have influenced the existnment pattern. These were historical and natural coupled with socio-political reasons. Historically all the settlements started like farm huts and with population increase through both birth and immigration, settlements expansion occurred in shape and form under traditional concepts and beliefs. With the traditional land allocation systems still prevailing, land use does not depict and consciously predetermined pattern. Apart from Kpando and the Resettlement towns, all the other towns and villages in the Kpando District do not have any comprehensive physical development planning scheme. This had promoted sporadic and haphazard development making the introduction of roads and other utility lines very difficult.
The uncontrolled development had created congestion more especially within the central areas of the urban and semi urban communities making accessibility very difficult particularly in time of disasters.
Age and Sex Distribution of the Popul
The population structure is young with about 38.1% aged between 0-14 and lower than the regional average of 41.1%. The aged population that is 60 years and above account for 9.8%, while the economically active population of 15 years to 59 years is represented by 52%. The population pyramid is therefore of a bell-shaped with a broad base, which tapers off with increasing age.
With young population, the district is characterized by high dependency ratio. There are however, exceptions in the age groups 5 – 9 years, 55-59 years and 60-64 years, which have larger populations than those of their immediate younger groups for both males and females. With increasing age, the structure looks slightly thinner for the males than the females, indicating that, at the older ages, the proportion of males is lower than that of the female except for the age group 15-19.
Age Structure, 2000 PHC
|Age Groups||Female||Male||Total||Total (%)|
Source: Ghana Statistical Service, 2000.
The above table suggests that 38.1% of the population is under 15 years and 9.8% of the population is above 60 years. The dependency population (0.14) years and 60 years and above is 47.9%. This implies that 52.1on age group.
Rural-Urban Distribution of the Population
The rural/urban classification of localities is population based. This means that a settlement with a population of size 5000 or more is classified as urban and settlement with less than 5000 people is considered rural. Based on this classification, Kpando District can be considered as rural district since 76% of the population lives in the rural area whereas only 24% are in urban area. This means that there is only one settlement with population of more than 5000 which is the district capital: Kpando.There are above 132 communities which make up the district. The urban-rural population distribution is highly skewed in favour of the rural areas as shown in the table below.
The population structure is young with about 38.1% aged between 0-14 and lower than the regional average of 41.1%. The aged population, that is 60 years and above account for 9.8%, while the economically active population of 15 years to 59 years is represented by 52%.
Food crops such as maize, rice, plantain, cassava, yam and other vegetables especially garden eggs, okro and chili pepper are grown both on subsistence and commercial level. Crop production is largely rain-fed even though there are water sources suitable for irrigation. The traditional technology of production continues to dominate the sector with some farmers responding favorably to the extension messages of the DADU. The average land holding per farmer is relatively low and is about 0.5 ha. The table below illustrates the major production areas in the district.
Production Areas of Major Food Crops
|Type of Crop||Major Production Areas|
|Maize||Kpando, Awate, Gbefi, Vakpo, Botoku, Tsrukpe|
|Cassava||Gbefi, Kpando, Vakpo, Kudzra, Sovie, Adofe|
|Yam||Kpando, Dafor, Fesi, Awate, Vakpo, Konda|
|Okro||Torkor, Gbefi, Kpando|
|Garden eggs||Vakpo, Gbefi, Yordan-Nu, Torkor|
|Rice||Kpando, Gbefi, Kudzra, Wusuta|
Source: DADU, Kpando, 2011.
The table below depicts the area planted with some selected food crops from the year 2000 to 2010.
Source: DADU, Kpando, 2011.
The annual production of the selected food crops are indicated in the table below showing that cassava is the major contributor to food crop basket in the district.
Table 5: Production of selected Food Crops (Mt)
Source: DADU, Kpando, 2011.
There are some non-traditional export crops which have emerged recently and wholly owned by both local and expatriate commercial farmers. The main crops under cultivation are Mango, Pawpaw, Pineapple and vegetables. The productions of these crops are on a large scale plantation for the export market and the local market and at the same time providing employment for the youth in the district. The crops are cultivated under both irrigation and rain-fed. The table below shows the major farms and their location.
|Name of Farm||Location||Crops under cultivation||Area (Ha)|
|Tropigah Farms||Gbefi Hoeme||Pawpaw, Pineapples||42|
|Akuana Farms||Yordan-Nu||Garden Eggs||4.8|
|Christopher Farms||Vakpo||Garden Eggs||4.0|
Source: DADU, Kpando, 2011.
The livestock sector which accounts for 18% is less developed. Despite the production being widespread, output of livestock is however low. Common livestock found in the district include sheep, goats, cattle, pigs, ducks and guinea fowls.
About 80% of all households in the district keep one or the other type of livestock. The commonest livestock among them are domestic fowls. The system widely practiced is free-range whereby the birds are allowed to scavenge for food the whole day with little or no supplementary feeding. These birds are generally hard with low growth rate and have poor weight gains.
Households also keep small ruminants (sheep and goat), with most of them being housed during the day and let loose in the evenings for foraging. Cattle production is rather on a relatively small scale and confined mostly to the western tip of the district bordering the Volta Lake around Kpando Torkor, Awate and Gbefi. Pig production is gradually gaining ground with concentration in Kpando Torkor, Vakpo and Gbefi. Below is a table showing the current Poultry/Livestock Census conducted in the Kpando District.
Poultry/Livestock Census in the Kpando District
|ZONE||TOTAL LISTED LIVESTOCK/ POULTRY|
Source: DADU, Kpando, 2011.
The creation of the Volta Lake in 1964 resulted in an immense fishery potential estimated at 40,000 tonne per year on which some 300,000 fisher folk nationwide depend for their livelihood. By the mid 1980s the lake fishery had become unprofitable with a sizeable proportion of the fishermen using illegal fishing methods such as Adranyi, Atidza, Bamboo, Zugu and Agbodor which account for the depletion of the lake resources. Studies conducted in 2003 have shown that fish catch per unit of effort declined from 16.4kg/canoe/day in 1991 to 5.8kg/canoe/day in 2000 and estimated to decline further in the years to come if no sustainable interventions are prescribed to address the decline.
The fishing is the dominant occupation of people in the 54 communities in the district living along the Volta Lake. Fishing is therefore carried out along the entire southern border with 80km along the Volta Lake. The major fishing communities include Kpando Torkor, Awate Tornu, Botoku and Dafor Tornu. There are about 40 other smaller fishing communities along the lake. Some fishing also takes place on the River Dayi.
Fishermen along the Volta Lake are becoming increasingly poorer years after years and livelihoods dependent on the fishing alone is consequently becoming unsustainable.
Aqua culture or fish farming has attracted huge investment and potentials in the district over the years. The investment opportunities largely exist in the district.
Commercial Development of Farmer-Based Organization-MiDA
The purpose of the project was to train farmers to acquire technologies in crop production, see farming as a form of business and also provide them with a start. Twenty-two (22) FBOs are beneficiaries of the project.
All the twenty-two (22) FBOs comprising 603 males and 481 females received technical training in commercialization of agriculture and were supported with starter pack comprising 2,168 bags of NPK, 1,084 bags of Sulphate of Ammonia, 1,084 respirators, 784 hermetic bags, 1,084 pairs of wellington boots, 9,756 Kg of seed maize and GH¢ 32,520.00 of land preparation money. The first five (5) FBOs have received credit amounting to GH¢ 1,745,000.00 for their various enterprises.
5.1.2: Export Marketing and Quality Awareness Programme
The purpose of this project is to ensure that quality horticultural crops are produced in the district for export and the local markets. The project is currently undertaking the following activities in the district.
1) Renovation of abandoned structures at Vakpo New Adomi demonstration site. These structures comprise; 30 dormitory block, Farmer Manager’s residence and Office block with laboratory.
2) Construction of new structures. These are fertilizer & chemical store, conference & canteen, park house, parking shed, garage and 6.5 ha irrigation site.
3) Capacity building for horticultural farmers (mango, pineapple, chili pepper & garden eggs). This training was in the area of
- Fruit fly management,
- Post harvest handling in mango and pineapple,
- Pruning of mango plantation,
- Production of horticultural crops.
Infrastructure Development. A 4.5km feeder road from Gbefi Hoeme to Tropigha Farms was constructed.
Nerica Rice Dissemination Project
The project commenced in 2008 in the district and was meant to promote the cultivation of upland rice in the district. The following are what has been achieved so far since the inception of the project.
1) Provision of support for institutions comprising two (2) first cycle schools, three (3) second cycle schools and Kpando prisons. The support was in the form of land preparation money, fertilizers, weedicides and rice seeds which is equivalent to GH¢ 5,043.00. The total production from these institutions was 23 MT of paddy rice which was to supplement their feeding. It also served as rehabilitation for the prison inmates.
2) Provision of support for individuals and farmer groups totaling 500 farmers (307 males & 193 females). The support was in the form of seeds, land preparation, fertilizers and weedicides amounting to GH¢ 24, 087.00. A total of 498 MT of paddy rice was obtained which was to serve as food security for the district. The farmers were expected to pay at least 60% of the support received.
Market Oriented Agriculture Programme
The programme has so far undertaken the following activities in the district.
1) Establishment of Gbefi Organic Pineapple project in collaboration with SNV and WAFF (West Africa Fair Fruits).
2) MOAP in collaboration with SNV has established a database to store data on farmers (mango and pineapple), Input dealers, Processors and the Financial Institutions.
3) Fruit fly control. Several sensitization and training workshops have been organized for horticultural farmers in the district on the control of fruitfully.
4) Capacity building for MoFA staff in mango and pineapple production.
Purely Ghana Government Funded Projects
National Cockerel Project
A total of 600 8-week old cockerels were sold at a subsidized price to 22 males and 38 females in the district in 2009 and 2010. This has improved the protein intake of the beneficiaries and has also increased their income levels from the sale of their cockerels.
Youth in Agriculture Programme
This programme provides support to individual farmers and groups in the form of land preparation, seed maize, fertilizers and technical support. The total amount of loan given to farmers in the district in 2010 was GH¢ 8,124.00. So far GH¢ 5,130.00 of the total amount given has been recovered representing 63.15% of the total loan. A total of 456 male and 276 female farmers benefited from the programme.
Agricultural Related NGOs
Christian Rural Network (CRAN). They provide microfinance to small scale farmers.
Microfinance : Provides seed and small loans to farmer groups,
Epicenters: Support cluster of communities with materials like roofing sheets, cement, wood to put up centers that have, banking facilities, clinic, and food store and conference room.
STRENGTHS, WEAKNESS, OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES IN THE AGRICULTURAL SECTOR
The double maxima rainfall pattern experienced put the district at comparative advantage in food production and food security.
The Volta Lake and River Dayi provide a prime farming land for the cultivation of a variety of food crop and vegetables under irrigation.
There is a huge potential for cage culture in the district.
Bad access routes to food production centres
Limited number of tractor services in the district to encourage mechanization
Inadequate irrigation facilities to encourage all year round farming
Difficulty in accessing credit for farming