Milled rice has been officially added to listed products on the Ghana Commodity Exchange (GCX) as part of efforts to standardise quality and transform its marketing.
With the listing of rice, farmers can now access secured storage with grain-testing facilities, grain quality improvement, capacity building, as well as linkages to sourced grain from the wider West African market.
According to the GCX, adding rice to listed commodities will help to standardise its trading in Ghana with the GCX’s grading system, to enable buyers and sellers appropriately judge the quality of produce they trade.
Chief Executive Officer of GCX, Tucci Goka Ivowi – speaking at a ceremony to mark the official trading of rice in Accra, said the Exchange has been working to develop the commodity value chain and add value to the lives of Ghanaian farmers through improvement in their incomes within a transparent and fair market.
“The Exchange has worked with rice market actors to deliberate on dynamics which occur in trading rice and on ensuring that all considerations to ensure the most efficient methods for trading on the Exchange are taken into account,” she said.
Mrs. Tucci, further emphasised that the GCX warehouse receipt financing scheme will also help rice farmers to access capital from banks at reasonable , which can then be reinvested back into their activities.
President of Ghana Rice Inter Professional Body (GRIB), Nana Adjei Ayeh II, indicated that adding rice to listed commodities on the GCX will increase marketing opportunities for farmers as well as address post-harvest loss issues and lack of financing.
“I am wholly confident that this step taken here today, to launch rice trading through the Exchange, will be of immense value to the Ghanaian rice farmer. We know that trading through GCX guarantees maximum benefit for the farmer in terms of quality, transparency and, most importantly, timely payment,” he said.
The listing of rice now brings the total number of listed commodities on the electronic trading platform to five — rice, maize, soya bean, sorghum and sesame.
The Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) identified rice as an important food crop that should be given special attention for food self-sufficiency in Ghana, because it has over the years increasingly become the locally most-consumed staple food after maize.
The country currently imports about 50 percent of its rice needs, and government through Planting for Food and Jobs plans to support the value chain to satisfy 100 percent of local demand by 2025.
The GCX is a marketplace where buyers and sellers of listed commodities undertake electronic trading under rules. The mission is to connect markets, people and provide opportunities by using the most modern interactive technology that meets the needs of market and stakeholders.