Poultry farmers in Ghana are still awaiting financial support from the government which was promised last year to revive the ailing poultry industry.
Kwadwo Asante, the Chairman of the National Association of Poultry Farmers (GNAPF) says it is yet to receive the GH¢39.54 million which was promised in August 2014.
According to Asante, 2014 was very challenging for poultry farmers, with the depreciation of the cedi against the major foreign currencies and the power crisis ('dumsor dumsor') causing the most problems. With 80% of the ingredients for poultry feed being imported and the cedi depreciation the cost of production has increased tremendously, Asante confirmed.
A large portion of the amount the government had promised in August 2014 had been expected to be given to a company called Johnny's Food and Meat Complex (JFamco) in order to set up a processing plant in Accra. "This money is yet to be released to either JFamco or the association. If we had got the processing plant, producing birds for consumption in the country wouldn't have been a problem at all," he said.
"The only support the poultry industry has seen this year is a private initiative, dubbed 'Project One Million Birds', by Boris B's Farms & Veterinary Supplies Ghana Ltd under which farmers managed to produce 400,000 birds for the local market," he noted.
He, therefore, appealed to the government, the Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture to speed up the release of the Export Development and Agricultural Investment Fund (EDAIF) because it was long overdue.
The government, some months ago, indicated that it had initiated an intervention to revamp the poultry sector.
The proposed project targeted the production of five million broiler birds annually, with 15,000 broiler birds being processed daily at two existing processing plants in the Ashanti Region, namely, Darko Farms Company Ltd and Yamoah Company Ltd, and a third plant to be established in the Greater Accra Region on the premises of JFamco Ltd.
Had the government provided the financial support it had promised earlier, the poultry farmers would have produced enough birds to feed the whole country for the festive season.
Source: Ghana MMA