TEMA:New edible oil plant opened in Tema
|Clement Kofi Humado, Agric Minister|| |
Avnash Industries, an Indian company, has inaugurated a US 60m edible-oil plant in Tema to produce 500 metric tonnes of edible-oil per day.
This would boost its capacity to produce 1,500 metric tonnes per day in less than two years, with the existing storage capacity of 100,000 metric tonnes, to help reduce the dependence on the import of the product.
Mr Bhagwan K. Mirachandani, Chairman of Avnash Group of Companies, said for Ghana to self-sufficient it was important to develop its agriculture base to avoid the importance of rice and other food products.
He said the plant employs about 500 people but indirectly creates over 2,000 jobs through the sourcing of the establishment of oil palm plantations.
Dr Shashi Kataria, Managing Director of Avnash Edible Oil Plant, said the company was well positioned to help farmers realize their dream of feeding the nation.
“True to our corporate philosophy of maximising use of local resources, each of our agric-based activities is supported by an out –grower scheme activated by our nuclear farms“, he said.
Clement Kofi Humado, Minister for Food and Agriculture, said the President’s vision on agriculture is predicated on the private sector as the engine of growth.
He expressed willingness to work hand-in-hand with Avnash since their objective to develop agriculture in the country was in line with that of his Ministry.
“I am particularly delighted that the project is not just for oil production, but aims at helping out-growers as well”, he said.
Speaking on behalf of President John Dramani Mahama, Mr Seth Tekper , Minister for Finance, said despite the availability of abundant natural resources in the country, the unavailability of desired incentives for farmers is curtailing growth.
“It is this void that is being addressed by the edible-oil processing plant; it’s capable of 500 tonnes per day, opens up new opportunities to thousands of people-cultivators, transporters and traders”, he said.
He said entrepreneurs who believed in adding value to their areas of activity were welcome to partner government in making the country self-sufficient in staple foods.
Currently, Avnash has a 450 metric tonnes per-day rice milling plant in Tamale that will be opened in April. The company has also leased 30 acres of land at Buipe to set up a 300 metric tonnes per-day groundnut-oil plant.
Avnash has additionally acquired and upgraded three defunct plants: Boswell Oil Plant, Blue Mont Shea Butter Plant, and Nasia Mill.