Sole indigenous insecticides manufacturer, Beatex Enterprise Limited, has expanded its existing factory under government’s One District, One Factory initiative as it seeks to produce to supply local importers of the commodity – specifically mosquito coils.
The company, which produces two popular brands—Lord and Old Soldier Jumbo mosquito coils—solicited support from government’s flagship industrialisation programme to secure ultra-modern equipment and machines as part of plans to enhance its production capacity and profitability.
When completed, the new facility will be able to produce about one 40-foot container of mosquito coils per day, which is equivalent to 2,000 cartons—and this figure could be doubled should it be operated under a shift system.
This output, according to the company, will be sufficient to meet domestic demand; and the move will save the economy from harsh effects of the cedi’s depreciation.
“We [Beatex] are into manufacturing mosquito coil products; and now we want to manufacture and supply the whole country and beyond. We are in discussions with some firms that import mosquito coils to produce on contract basis for them.
“If they can get the same quality products here, nobody will bother changing dollars to buy the product overseas,” chairman of the company, Edmund Akoto Bamfo, told the B&FT in an interview.
According to Mr. Akoto Bamfo, the mosquito coils will be produced to meet specifications and standards of both the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) and the international market, and in line with requirements of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA).
He added: “With this facility, importers of the product can now get it at same price and quality locally; persons in the mosquito coil business who do not have the capacity to produce can come for us to produce for them”.
Beatex Enterprise currently has 200 direct and 10,000 indirect employees nationwide, comprising wholesalers, retailers, distribution van-drivers as well as rural youth in the production of local raw materials, among others.
Mr. Akoto Bamfo praised government for the 1D1F programme: “We didn’t have the capacity, requisite machinery, anything to work on that large scale; but now we have a lot of machines, and our production capacity is going to increase”.
He added: “1D1F, for me, is a savior; because until I opted for it, we were doing something on a very small scale.
“With this factory expansion, the company is going to employ more people and contribute massively to the economy. It is a saviour for me, otherwise we would not be in business.”
To sustain the programme and also bolster efforts at import substitution, Mr. Akoto Bamfo further urged government to augment the viable initiative by protecting and nurturing 1D1F companies into mega-businesses.
“How to nurse and nurture? You protect them from unfair trade practices and unfair competition, because most of the 1D1F companies are small/start-up firms.
“Government must support us to grow and be able to contribute effectively to the country’s economic growth,” he indicated.
“For instance, if things can be produced here and a particular company can produce, why don’t we ban importation of such items for local companies here to grow and employ more people?”