The Minister of Trade and Industry, Kwabena Tahir Hammond, has reiterated government’s desire to support the private sector through the One District One Factory (1D1F) programme to increase local production of children’s food, in a bid to reduce imports.
Speaking on the floor of parliament, on steps that government through his ministry is taking to reduce imports of children’s food, the minister noted that the import bill of food preparations for infant use, which was approximately US$25million in 2021, reduced to US$20million in 2022.
“In this regard, government will continue to assist the food sector’s growth through targetted interventions, especially companies specialising in the manufacture of food preparations for infant use. This will further reduce the import bill for infant food preparations.
“More specifically, government is supporting the private sector to enhance local production of food preparations for children. This is partly through the 1D1F programme and partly through the laudable efforts of key players in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) industry,” the minister added.
Mr. Hammond further explained that under the 1D1F programme, Premium Foods Limited – located at Kwaso in the Ejisu municipality of the Ashanti Region – has installed a new production line with capacity to produce 18 tonnes per hour of highly-nutritious, fortified blended foods and ingredients. The company, he added, has installed additional silos with storage capacity of 17,600 metric tonnes to ensure a consistent supply of raw materials for its productions.
Also under the programme, Yedent Agro Group of Companies – located at Abesim in the Sunyani municipality of the Bono Region – has installed production capacity of 1000mt per annum for the production of fortified foods for children.
Additionally, a leading FMCG company, Nestlé Ghana Limited, in June 2022 inaugurated a GH¢175million plant in Tema for manufacturing instant cereal – with a production capacity of 6,700 tonnes per annum.
The next phase of expansion, according to the minister, is projected to provide an additional 6,700 tonnes of production capacity at a cost of GH¢56million and expected to be completed in 2024.
Mr. Hammond, in his presentation, stated that 296 projects under the 1D1F programme are at various stages of completion. Of the number, 126 companies are in operation; 143 are under construction; and 27 are pipeline projects.
“Of this total, 233 projects are established by private sector business promoters with active facilitation by government, while 63 are established directly by government.
“It must be noted that government’s active facilitation of private sector investment in 1D1F projects consists of special incentives including tax exemptions and the provision of low interest for loans granted by participating financial institutions. It also includes, where applicable, the extension of critical utilities such as access to electricity and water,” he said.