Imports killing Ghana’s poultry industry – Darko Farms owner

Poultry farmers are appealing to government to stop the importation of poultry products which they claim is killing the local poultry industry.

Mr Augustine Kuudar of Darko Farms told Kessben TV News that the future of the industry was very bleak if government does not intervene.

Mr Kuudar, a pioneer in poultry farming in Ghana, said: ” Over 200,000 metric tons of poultry products are imported into the country is killing the local poultry farmer. Poultry farmers are in dire need of government support in the areas of creating ready market for their products and credit assessments at lower percentage to open up the industry to people to venture into the poultry business.”

Earlier this year, government announced a GHC50 million package to revive the ailing poultry industry.The funding is expected to resuscitate dying companies, start new businesses,as well as set up small scale processing plants to process the birds for the local market.

The venture is expected to help reduce the country’s over-dependence on imported poultry, which is currently costing government some US$350 million annually.

At a business breakfast meeting in  Accra on June 15,  2014, the Managing Director of the Ghana-Netherlands Chamber of Commerce (GHANECC), Mr Nico Van Staalduinen, stirred controversy when he suggested to the government not to concentrate on poultry production because Ghana lacked the competitive advantage in sector.

Mr Van Staalduinen said the conditions in Ghana including high temperatures, high cost of poultry feed and frequent outbreak of bird flu made it uncompetitive for the country to undertake commercial rearing of the birds.

The chairman of the Poultry Farmers Association of Ghana, Mr Kwadwo Asante, responded by saying that since the government does not want to ban importation of poultry outright, poultry farmers would aim to achieve full production and phase out imports.

Zambia and Cote d’Ivoire have banned the importation poultry products, in a bid to allow local poultry farmers to flourish.