“From a high of 86,373 metric tonnes of chicken imports in 2011, the figure reduced significantly to 58,999 metric tonnes in 2013.
“This calls for firm support and commitment from all stakeholders to ensure that broader objectives of the Ghana Broiler Revitalisation Project are achieved,” he told Parliament last week.
The Ministries of Food and Agriculture and Trade and Industry teamed up with the Ghana National Association of Poultry Farmers (GNAPF) to introduce the Ghana Broiler Revitalisation Project in July last year, as a short-term intervention to curb the excessive imports of frozen chicken into the country.
The Project is expected to provide support for identified medium- and large-scale commercial poultry farmers to produce 30,000 metric tonnes of processed chicken for the local market. Domestic poultry production has been increasing steadily -- from 33,790 metric tonnes to 54,809 metric tonnes over the past five years.
Mr. Kwetey, giving an update of the project, said it has been very successful as the pilot exercise alone produced and processed a total of 650,000 birds out of a planned one million.
“The project has so far sold about 1,000 metric tonnes of processed chicken to selected marketers in Accra and Kumasi,” he added.
Mr. Kwetey said the positive trend in the poultry industry can also be attributed to government interventions such as the promotion of maize and soya production, subsidised maize sales to poultry farmers by the Buffer Stock Company (NAFCO), and a waiver policy on agricultural inputs.
Government, as part of efforts to boost the country local poultry processing capacity, has acquired land at Duayaw Nkwanta in the Brong Ahafo Region for the installation of a 5,000 bird-per-hour-capacity poultry processing plant.
Mr. Kwetey said if given the needed collaboration and support, the ongoing interventions and initiatives will contribute to economic growth through employment-generation along the poultry value chain, and increased maize and soya bean production as well as increased trade in processing and packaging materials.