La Bianca Company Limited, a major distributor of frozen food products, has reiterated its commitment to the local poultry industry.
The company’s commitment is manifested in its efforts at promoting production and consumption of locally produced poultry products. The move is aimed at bridging the gap between supply and demand, La Bianca’s Managing Director, Etse Gadegbeku, has explained.
The company has commenced distribution of local poultry products on a large scale to its customers, particularly retailers, across the country. The move is expected to create a ready market for locally produced chicken, thereby encouraging more investment into production.
“We want to support the local poultry industry. The local chicken is nicer, tastes better and is of better quality, so we have to push and market it,” Mr. Gadegbeku said.
He noted that farmers are already doing their best, and there is the need for support to enable them increase production to meet demand.
In 2021, more than 600,000 tonnes of frozen chicken were imported into the country, says the Ghana National Association of Poultry Farmers (GNAPF).
The data, sourced from the European Union (EU), indicate that 569 million pieces of frozen chicken were imported into the country last year – translating into US$600million. Currently, it is estimated that the local poultry industry controls only a two percent share of the domestic market, with the remaining 98 percent going to imports.
Against this backdrop, Mr. Gadegbeku, lamented that the current gap between demand and supply is too wide – calling for more collaboration and policies to incentivise local poultry production.
Cost of production, particularly inputs such as feed, has over the years been the major challenge bedeviling the local sector.
He argued that if the local industry can be supported to meet about 50 percent of demand, it will go a long way to strengthen the cedi, create jobs and stimulate economic growth.
He therefore encouraged Ghanaians to support the poultry industry by patronising locally produced chicken. “If you patronize local poultry, you are also supporting Ghanaian farmers – poultry and maize farmers carton producers and others in the value chain.”
By patronising chicken produced in the country, Mr. Gadegbeku added, farmers will be able to expand, enjoy economies of scale and become competitive.