A 20% Yield Increase in Pineapple Production in Guinea
Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) has cleared 100 hectares of bushes in the Kindia region, the heart of Guinean agriculture, for pineapple farming.
The city of Kindia in Guinea is the most important center that meets the need for various crops, including pineapples, mangoes, bananas, cashews, palm oil, corn, and coffee. The fertile and flat land has a low yield per unit due to the use of traditional agricultural methods. Other disadvantages include the presence of fertile soil among bushes and the difficulty of using hand tools to clear the land. The main occupation of the farmers in the region is pineapple farming. Pineapple production takes place on an area of 650 hectares in the country. There is a yield rate of 35 tons per hectare. Forty percent of the product is exported. Demand for the exported pineapple brand Baron is high; however, in order to meet the demand, the idle soil among the bushes needs to be cleared with heavy equipment for pineapple farming as soon as possible.
In order to increase pineapple production, TİKA is clearing 100 hectares of fertile yet idle land covered in bushes for pineapple farming using heavy machinery. TİKA will also commission irrigation pumps and engine pumps to ensure productivity throughout the year. Clearing 100 hectares of land for pineapple production will ensure a 20% increase in the yield. TİKA's direct contribution to Guinea's goal of reaching 1,000 hectares of arable land for pineapple production by the end of the year 2020 has earned the appraisal of the President of Guinea Alpha Conde and the residents of Kindia.
In his statement, President of the Kindia Pineapple Cooperative Camara Moussa said, "Turkey brought bounty to our land. Pineapples are the flagship of the fruit industry in Guinea, and we have a climate that is very suitable for pineapple farming. There is a great global demand for our pineapples, but we are unable to produce on a scale large enough to meet the demand. Most of our fertile lands are covered by bushes and productivity is low due to the use of traditional methods. TİKA submitted the land that would take years to clear manually to pineapple producers after clearing it with heavy machinery in 1 month. It also procured irrigation motors to enable production year-round. We, the Pineapple Foundation, hope to increase the 650 hectares of land to 1,000 hectares by the year 2020. We aim to increase the yield per hectare from 35 tons to 50 tons through irrigation, fertilization, and pest control techniques in the hot period, and we aim to increase export figures by air from 2,500 tons to 12,500 tons. The 100 hectares of land cleared by TİKA will provide us with 5,000 tons of pineapples, and the sale of this product will yield a revenue of 15,000,000,000 Guinean Francs (1.5 million Euros); this will also allow us to create 3,000 direct and 25,000 indirect employment opportunities."
Arafan Sylla, a Member of the Board of the Pineapple Federation, said, "Take a look at this land. All the land you see became this way in just two weeks. Imagine these machines staying here for two-three months. This would allow us to make all the land here arable. We would like Turkey to come to the rescue for the farmers here."
"We are delighted that TİKA is here"
Naby Camara, a member of the Pineapple Federation, said, "We are delighted that TİKA is here. All the village people here are pineapple producers. We are together and we hope that TİKA will help us in ensuring our youth stay here and work with us. Because most of our youth leave this place to go to the Mediterranean and do not survive. We hope to achieve the suitable conditions to keep them here. There are six regions: Dandakhouré Centre, Mangadakha, Hamdanlaye, Billidè, and Feta. These lands belong to a total of six towns, and we hope Turkey will help us in cultivating these lands.”
Moreover, TİKA's Guinea Coordinator Gökhan Keser expressed that Guinea used to be the center of pineapple production and the production of other crops, but this quality is lost throughout the years due to the neglection of agriculture, and added that all efforts were oriented towards revitalizing agriculture in the country and directly contributing to the country's economy.