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Abstract

Horticultural exports contribute immensely to Ghanaian agriculture and rural development, by generating pro-poor growth and developing non-traditional exports. With appropriate policies and technologies like biotechnology, horticulture increases the incomes of smallholder farmers, enhancing rural development cap is her inability to sustain export growth on the open market. Currently, only about 40,000MT out of the 100,000MT of pineapples demanded by markets across Europe from Ghana can be produced. Although conventional plant breeding techniques have made considerable progress in the development of improved varieties, they have not been able to keep pace with the increasing demand for vegetables and fruits in developing countries. There is the need to integrate biotechnology to speed up crop improvement programmes. Biotechnological tools have revolutionized the entire crop improvement programs by providing new strains of plants, supply of planting material, more efficient and selective pesticides and improved fertilizers. This study examined the link and interrelationship between horticultural farming, biotechnology and food security. The impact of biotechnology on the welfare of smallholder farmers was also analyzed. The paper concludes that the role of biotechnology in food security in Ghana cannot be overemphasized but still has a long way to go. Agricultural production and productivity problems in developing countries like Ghana go beyond technological solutions alone; already existing challenges of smallholder farmers should be addressed first. Biotechnology could however contribute to sustainable development by increasing agricultural productivity using new breeding techniques. It can also increase the revenues in agricultural production.

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