The Greater Accra Poultry Farmers Association (GAPFA) has bemoaned the challenges in accessing funds from commercial banks and other financial institutions. This, the Association attributed to the stifling of growth in the poultry industry.
According to the Vice President of the Association, Kwame Ntim Duodu, the perception of the poultry industry as a high risk investment needs to be reconsidered by financial institutions.
“They see the poultry industry as too risky even though everything, every aspect of life has some aspect of risk involved. But they tend to [label] the poultry industry as a very high risk area. So when we go there, the interest rate they want to give you, you better go out and struggle on your own. They don’t give us the loans and they raise the interests attached. You can’t even get it. The conditions and the interest rate per say is so high that, it’s so unattractive for you to go there for the loan and that is why many poultry farmers are operating less than their capacities or abilities to expand.
“So most of the poultry farmers or people willing to enter the poultry farming business do small small scale. Only few come and are able to do the medium-scale and only few are able to do the commercial, large-scale…So it’s extremely difficult getting funds from the bank and at reasonable interest rates.”Kwame Ntim Duodu
The Association made an earlier call to the government to take immediate and drastic measures to revive the once vibrant industry.
This initial call came on the back of reports by the importers and exporters association stating that government has scrapped the 30% benchmark value reduction policy. On numerous occasions, players in the country’s poultry industry lamented the unfair competition they face from imported products which are mostly cheaper than local ones, making it difficult for local players to enjoy a majority market share and expand their businesses.
The poultry industry in the past years also suffered many setbacks and was on the verge of collapse due to difficulty in accessing feed due to a shortage of maize for feed and the outbreak of bird flu.
Mr. Kwame Ntim Duodu on this grounds, urged government to pay attention to the industry to help it expand.
“If the government were to meet the poultry farmers and work out the math together of how much maize is needed for the industry that will be a solution to the shortages we have been having.
“Also, for the industry to grow, then, the government may say in one or two years, we want to reduce importation of poultry by this amount. So position yourselves to fill that space…”Kwame Ntim Duodu
Meanwhile, on March 7, 2023, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), in government’s stead, announced investing $541 million into the poultry industry to increase domestic production and reduce the need for imports.
MoFA to provide $541 million to boost production in the poultry industry
Robert Ankobia, Chief Director of MoFA noted that the investment seeks to enhance production activities in the industry, as well as, increase competitiveness in the industry.
This investment is in line with one of the key resolutions of the Dakar 2 Summit, which is intended to revamp the industry and position it to curb the excessive imports of poultry recently – over $600 million per annum.
“The investment will increase domestic production from the current 50,000 tonnes a year to an envisaged 450,000 tonnes per annum. This, in turn, is expected to increase the domestic poultry sector’s value from the existing US$62 million to US$562 million.”Robert Ankobia
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