By Kodjo Adams/Elizabeth Dabson, GNA
Accra, April 16, GNA - The Ghana Commodity Exchange (GCX) has conducted its first trade in soybean on the Exchange, adding up to the yellow and white maize that currently trades on the platform.
The platform will enable farmers to present good quality soybean and negotiate good prices, which incorporates their production cost.
The process allows the farmers to become price makers while buyers get guaranteed good quantity and quality soybean at their convenient locations.
Dr Kadri Alfah, the Chief Executive officer of GCX, announced this on Tuesday in Accra at the launch of the soybean on the Exchange platform.
"Trading soybean through the Exchange is expected to benefit all the parties involved in the value chain, especially farmers and processors. More farmers will be encouraged to cultivate the crop as they will be assured of market opportunities," he added.
Dr Alfah said with the Exchange acting as a platform for soybean trading, there would be a formalized system of produce marketing in terms of grading and standardization, benefiting farmers and buyers.
Ghana produces about 30,000 metric tonnes of soybean per year, where about 90 per cent are cultivated in the three Northern regions and the rest from Ejura farms and the south of the country.
The average price is between GHC97.00 to GHC120.00 for the 50kg bag size.
He said the Exchange had signed agreements with nine Ghanaian commercial banks to accept farmers who have harvested their commodity and deposited into the Exchange certified warehouse, as a sole collateral for short term loans to meet their capital needs.
The agreements offer affordable interest rates for farmers to invest in the value chain and increase agricultural production in the country.
He said the GCX in collaboration with its partners undertook extensive feasibility studies in post-harvest management, quality control, marketing, and production to improve Ghanaian commodity value chains.
He said the Exchange had been set up at various warehouses across the country and strategically positioned to be close to farming communities at the district, regional and national levels to ensure that farmers are saved from the huge cost of transporting their goods to designated places.
He encouraged farmers to join the platform and have access to affordable storage commodity for up to nine months and enjoy affordable drying, cleaning and weighing facilities to improve the quality and marketability of their products.
Mr Hanan Abdul Wahab, the Chief Executive Officer of Ghana National Buffer Stock (NAFCO), said the Stock had purchased 10,000 bags of 50 kg of maize for other bulk traders to boost the trading activities on the platform for the 2019/2020 academic year in September.
He said NAFCO would provide training opportunities to the Exchange to enhance their operations and as well support in providing opportunities for brokers farming and other stakeholders to derive the maximum benefits of the Exchange’s training.
The establishment of GCX commenced in 2015 with a regulated market that connects buyers and sellers of commodities.
It harnesses the internet and other digital tools in creating the markets with the value proposition of assuring market quality and quantity, timely delivery and payment of credits.