- Food security remains a vital ingredient for a thriving society.
- Institutions that key into the nutrition needs of a nation earn relevance.
- The Development Bank of Ghana is one of such institutions making crucial moves to address food needs of Ghana.
This March, in Kumasi, the Development Bank Ghana, DBG, as part of plans to advance food security in the country, has engaged the poultry value chain stakeholders to study existing challenges and provide financing support. The Bank is certain that cost of food can be minimized and importation into the country reversed if market failures in important areas of the food supply chain like rice, poultry, soybeans, and corn are looked into keenly and boosted through workable agricultural financing programs and monitoring reforms.
Therefore, the bank is working with Feed the Future Ghana Mobilizing Finance in Agriculture Activity, the Ghana Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending Project (GIRSAL), and other financial organizations to speed up sustainable food production. Speaking at the meeting with participants and stakeholders in the poultry value chain in Kumasi, Vice President for Research at the Development Bank Ghana, Dr Kwabena Opuni-Frimpong, said the bank had acknowledged and worked with about 12 establishments to scale up soya and maize production in Ghana.
He said that Ghana needs more maize for the poultry sector to perform rather optimally, adding that Ghana is blessed with arable lands and other resources. “There is, therefore, no need for Ghana to be importing $600 million worth of chicken every year; no need to import a billion dollars’ worth of rice every year. These are things we can do because it will generate jobs and create wealth, and ensure spatial distribution of resources,” he said.
Dr Opuni-Frimpong said that one of the problems they are solving in the west African country is food security, citing the 2021 Global Food Security Index, where Ghana occupied the 83rd. position out of 113 countries listed. The bank’s involvement in identifying bankable ventures within the value chains will close the gap of nutritional inconsistencies. He also added that the DBG had gathered funds of more than $700 million to aid production of the selected crops so that farmers can gain access to requisite resources and support that will ensure an increased output and improved food security. He added that the DBG team had before now engaged stakeholders in maize and soybean value chains at Sunyani.
Dr Victor Antwi, key figure in the Feed the Future Ghana Mobilizing Finance in Agriculture Activity, said the partnership with the Bank is aimed at supporting and enhancing food security in the country. Adding that the partnership provides ample opportunity to reach out to many more women known along these value chains.