Organic fertiliser producers join forces to support gov’t

Organic fertiliser producers join forces to support gov’t

To help bridge the shortage of fertiliser in the country caused by the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, local organic fertiliser producers have come together to form an association to scale up production of fertiliser to complement government’s efforts.

Members of the new association – Organic Fertiliser Producers Association of Ghana (OFPAG) – will pool resources to produce enough fertiliser to supply the country.

The move is being championed by the Jospong Group of Companies (JGC).

Speaking at its maiden meeting in Accra on Tuesday, June 14, 2022, the Executive Chairman of JGC, Dr. Joseph Siaw Agyepong, underscored the need for local producers of organic fertiliser to collaborate and work with a sense of urgency to address the current problem, especially in view of the global fertiliser shortage.

He explained that the coming together of organic fertiliser producers will facilitate idea-sharing and allow them the space to produce adequate quality fertilisers to augment the country’s supply needs.

“When we come together as an association, we will not only present a united front but also be stronger with ideas which enable us to contribute in resolving the country’s fertiliser shortage,” he said.

He recounted how JGC played an instrumental role in the country’s efforts to tackle COVID.

In a presentation on the need to form such an association, Deputy Executive Director of the Centre for Indigenous Knowledge of Organisational Development (CIKOD), Mr. Daniel Bannoka, pointed out that the Russia-Ukraine war has exposed the vulnerabilities in Ghana’s agriculture.

This, he said, is being manifested in the high-priced agricultural inputs which are contributing to high food prices across the country.

“We must be worried as a country, because the severity of the situation is being felt everywhere in the country,” he said.

According to him, there is a need to take action now to prevent food shortages in the country.

Against this backdrop, Mr. Bannoka is happy that local organic fertiliser producers have resolved to form an association to intervene in the fertilizer-shortage problem.

“By coming together you will have a big voice, benefit from unity in strength, and have strong negotiating power,” he spelt out.

While enumerating some of the advantages that come from belonging to an association, he admonished them to try and weed-out charlatans from the organic fertiliser space.

He also called on government to support the association by creating an enabling environment that enables it to thrive.

“The state can also waive taxes on machines that will be imported by members of the association,” he urged.

More importantly, he charged the association to regularly undertake good research and develop good extension content.

A representative from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) encouraged the members to build up their capacities so they are able to produce enough fertiliser to feed the nation.

According to him, the ministry is ready to back them in their efforts to support government in the production of fertiliser.

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