Kukua Asamoah/Emmanuel Kwame Donkor, GNA
Accra, March 13, GNA - Ghana will host the first ever Value Added Agriculture Expo in West Africa, aimed at promoting value addition to agriculture and aquaculture from August 2 to 4, this year.
The Expo, to be organised by Reed Exhibitions, a UK-based event organiser, with an Africa Office in South Africa, is expected to promote ‘farm to fork’ solutions to Ghana’s agricultural, aquaculture, and agro processing sectors.
The Ministry of Food and Agriculture would be collaborating with Reeds Exhibitions and other sponsors including Barclays Bank Limited, Mel Consultancy, Interplast, Ecommodity, and the Kingdom of the Netherlands to host the Expo.
At a media briefing and event launch in Accra on Tuesday, Ms Adele Eloff, the Africa Manager of Reed, said the organisation sought to strengthen its current footprint in Africa by launching its Value Added Agriculture Expo in Ghana, the first in West Africa, but second after Kenya in Africa last year.
She said the Expo would cover the full value chain in agriculture business showcasing input and livestock care among other things with the best practises to increase the production ratio of outputs to input.
“The show brings together all the major players in offering product services in the agro business industry,” she said.
“We will have space for 70 indoor exhibitions and 60 outdoor exhibiting, which will make this the largest in West Africa,” Ms Eloff said.
She said the Expo was about teaching Ghanaian farmers and agro business people the right techniques and equipment to increase the production and quality of their product.
“There is no use if you push so much out but the quality of the product is not of a level to be able to sell on supermarkets or to be actually exported. So it’s all about increasing your product quality with lesser input,” she said.
Dr Gyiele Nurah, the Minister of State in charge of Agriculture, welcomed the Expo, saying it would bring out the best in the industry and create a good platform for exchange and networking among industry players, and offer the opportunity to foster business relationships and partnerships.
He said the introduction of modern technology had also been acknowledged as a very important factor in doubling productivity and so the Value Added Agriculture Expo West Africa, would help bring a lasting turn-around result in the agriculture sector.
Mr Ron Strikker, the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, platinum sponsors of the exhibition, commended the Government of Ghana for according high priority to the agriculture sector through initiatives including the Planting for Food and Jobs, placing agric in a prominent position in the 2018 Budget and the upcoming Marshall Plan for the sector.
“The Netherlands strongly supports this, and as one of the world’s leaders in agriculture, we have a lot to offer, knowledge, technology and innovation,” Mr Strikker said.
During the exhibition, there would also be business workshops for farmers and the agro processing service industry to enable them to learn the business and technical skills simultaneously.