Essikado (W/R),– Agriculture Business Partnerships (RABPs) has been inaugurated in the Western Region to develop commodity value chains and market linkages for improved market access for farmers.

 

The initiative would create friendly and less expensive market platforms to enhance internal trade among chain members and also provide a stage for the formation of an apex platform focusing on the sustainable ready market for agriculture commodities in the Region.

 

Mr Felix Blay Kenya, Axim District Agric Director underscored the importance of the RABPs and said agriculture was a business, and that farmers and value chain members must make their business decisions to grow their businesses.

 

However, he said there ought to be reliable information to make the right agric business decision, hence the decision to form the RABPs at all levels of the Region.

 

According to him, the ultimate aim of engaging in farming was to generate income and, therefore, it would be of no value if farmers did not get enough money for their produce.

 

In that regard, he said the RABPs platform would provide farmers and all those on the agricultural value chain the information needed to make the desired decision that would significantly improve upon their business.

 

“It is not enough if farmers receive assistance from Agric extension officers to cultivate their produce, but farmers are not able to sell to get enough from what they are doing”, he said.

 

Mr Kenya urged all in the value chain to make full use of the platform to effectively promote their work.

 

He mentioned that the same RABPS were being formed in all the Regions of the country and indicated that a national Agric business platform would soon be created and duly inaugurated.

 

He said the Region had facilitated the formation of similar platforms in all Districts of the Region and urged the chain members at that level to make it more active for it to achieve its intended purpose.

 

Mr Frederick Aygapong, Chief Director, Western Regional Coordinating Council (WRCC), noted that the platform would go a long way to help farmers to showcase their products to marketers and ultimately improve agriculture in the Region.

 

With the formation of the RABPS, farmers will have easy access to veterinary services, seeds, fertilizers, and other agric inputs to improve upon their business.

 

He said WRCC would offer the necessary support to ensure the effective functioning of the platform and encouraged all stakeholders to make use of the platform to improve upon their agric business.

 

In a short presentation on the RABPS, Mr Ebow Dublin, Regional Monitoring and Evaluation Officer of the Department of Agriculture noted that farmers in Ghana often did not get enough money from their produce due to the unavailability of a ready market, stressing that farmers should not struggle to sell their produce.

 

He said the platform would create market linkages that support the commodity value chain in the Western Region and help secure ready markets for agricultural produce.

 

The objective, he said, was to grow Western Region agriculture through the value chain approach and promote market linkages for improved market access.

 

This, he indicated, required initiatives that would increase production and link farmers to the commodities market.

 

He said producing a value chain in the business of agriculture provided an opportunity to adapt business models and products that would increase the incomes of participants along the value chain.

 

Mr Francis Odoom of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) took participants through the processes of issuing licenses to food processors and called on the stakeholders in the agricultural value chain to ensure that local agric produce met the standards and were safe for consumption.

 

Source: Ghana News Agency

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