Ghana’s poultry sector is at a critical juncture, with industry experts and stakeholders calling for increased support and patronage to unlock its full potential. Predominantly driven by small to medium-scale producers, the sector is essential for providing affordable protein and creating employment opportunities across the country.

Data from the Ghana National Association of Poultry Farmers (GNAPF) and the Netherlands Enterprise Agency reveal that there are 40 large-scale commercial poultry farms in Ghana, mainly located in the Ashanti, Bono, and Ahafo regions. Despite this progress, Ghana spends close to $254 million on imported poultry meat, making it the 24th largest importer of poultry meat in the world.

Despite its significance, the industry faces numerous challenges. One major issue is the high cost of poultry feed, which accounts for about 70% of production costs. The reliance on imported maize and soybean meal, coupled with the absence of local feed mills, makes feed prices prohibitively expensive for many farmers.

Inadequate infrastructure also hampers productivity and affects the quality of poultry products. Many farms lack modern facilities, including proper housing for birds, efficient waste management systems, and cold chain logistics to maintain meat quality.

Access to finance remains another significant challenge. Small and medium-scale poultry farmers often struggle to secure loans due to high-interest rates and stringent collateral requirements, preventing them from expanding their operations and investing in better technology.

Disease management is yet another pressing issue. The sector is vulnerable to outbreaks of diseases like Avian Influenza and Newcastle Disease. Inadequate veterinary services and poor biosecurity measures exacerbate these problems, leading to significant losses for farmers.

To help improve Ghana’s poultry sector, Agrihouse Foundation introduced the Ghana Poultry Day initiative four years ago to promote the consumption and patronage of Ghana’s poultry sector, raise awareness about the pivotal role played by the poultry industry in areas such as employment generation, food security, and economic growth to help foster a greater appreciation for this sector among stakeholders and the public and fortify   its growth and sustainability.

The Ghana Poultry Day event have for the part years also help promote the nutritional and medicinal values of Ghanaian produced poultry, highlighting its lower toxin levels, reduced fat content, and higher Vitamin D. The event also educates the public on the benefits of consuming locally bred poultry   including its anticancer properties and lower cholesterol levels.

Speaking at the launch and mini stakeholder meeting of the 4th Ghana Poultry Day, Alberta Nana Akyaa Akosa, Executive Director of Agrihouse Foundation, highlighted the critical role of patronage in overcoming challenges faced by Ghana’s poultry sector. She stated, “Encouraging Ghanaians to patronize Ghana produced poultry is crucial for the industry’s growth by this we do not only supports the economy by keeping money within the country but also creates jobs and reduces the outflow of foreign exchange used for imports.”

Ms.Akosa also urged Ghanaians to start domestic poultry rearing and home gardens to enhance food security.

Looking forward to the event, Ms Akosa mentioned that the upcoming Ghana Poultry Day, scheduled for July 1, 2024, at the forecourt of the State House in Accra, will feature a dynamic program of activities including personality -advocate chef cooking competition; where MP’s, Footballers, Ambassadors, Queen mothers, media personalities, schools and women farmers will use our  poultry product to prepare different recipes which will be shared to the public for free ,there will also be town hall discussions and Exhibitions.

Dr. Comfort Acheampong, Coordinator of the Ghana National Egg Campaign Secretariat and Chairperson for the Ghana Poultry Day, stressed the importance of advocacy and promotion to strengthen Ghana’s poultry industry.

 She explained, “We must collectively work to overcome the challenges facing our poultry sector through strategic advocacy and promotion. Our efforts should focus on creating awareness and encouraging the consumption of locally produced poultry products. This not only supports local farmers but also ensures that our economy benefits from reduced import dependence.”

Dr. Acheampong called upon stakeholders, policymakers, and the public to rally behind initiatives like the Ghana Poultry Day to strengthen the sector and increase the consumption of locally produced poultry products. She asserted, “With concerted effort, the industry can overcome its current challenges and thrive.”

Adding to the discussion, Mr. Bright Manye, Deputy Director for the Animal Production Directorate at the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, emphasized the need for collective action. He pointed out, “The high cost of feed, which constitutes about 70% of production costs, makes it difficult for local farmers to achieve profitability. Any marginal change in feed prices significantly impacts the farmers’ bottom lines.”

Manye highlighted that in 2020, domestic chicken meat production in Ghana was around 40,000 metric tons, while imported chicken meat reached 150,000 metric tons. He noted, “Farmers also struggle with the costs of day-old chicks, vaccines, utilities, and the lack of quality processing facilities.”

He went on to discuss government initiatives aimed at tackling these challenges, such as the Livestock Development Project, the National Livestock Services Project, the Ghana Poultry Project, the Rearing for Food and Jobs Programme, and the Savannah Investment Programme. He mentioned, “One of the new initiatives, the West Africa Food System Resilience Project, aims to support anchor farmers in producing about 2 million broilers. Additionally, under the Planting for Food and Jobs II program, funding has been secured to produce 6 million birds, with more support anticipated through the Harnessing Agriculture Productivity and Prosperity for the Youth (HAPPY) Project.”

Manye concluded by emphasizing the potential of the poultry industry to create jobs and stimulate economic activities. “A thriving poultry industry can create jobs, particularly for women and youth, and stimulate economic activities,” he said. “This includes input supply, production, processing, marketing, and auxiliary services like husbandry, veterinary services, transportation, and equipment maintenance.”

Finally, Mr. Jones Aruna Nelson, Director of Corporate Affairs at the Ghana Tourism Authority, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership with Agrihouse Foundation.

“Our collaboration with Agrihouse Foundation for the 4th Ghana Poultry Day highlights our dedication to promoting agriculture as a key driver for enhancing Ghana’s tourism industry. This initiative marks a new era of celebration, and we are excited that the conversation on Agri-Tourism has begun with the Ghana Tourism Authority through the Ghana Poultry Day. The celebration of Ghana Poultry Day perfectly aligns with our mission to promote Ghana’s cultural heritage. Events like these attract both local and international tourists, significantly boosting our tourism sector. “He remarked

The 4th Ghana Poultry Day is organized by Agrihouse Foundation in partnership with the Ghana Tourism Authority and supported by various organizations, including the World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (WISHH), the Ghana National Egg Campaign Secretariat, the Ghana National Association of Poultry Farmers, and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture. Key sponsors include Amas Farms, Labianca Company Limited, 10th September Spices, Agrogenics Ghana Limited, and Maphlix Trust Ghana Ltd, Ghana Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending Project and Wilmar International.

Agrihouse Foundation invites poultry farmers, agribusiness professionals, policymakers, students, stakeholders in the poultry value chain, and the general public to mark their calendars for July 1, 2024, at the Forecourt of the Statehouse and join in championing poultry excellence. The event will celebrate achievements, address challenges, and chart a course towards a thriving and sustainable poultry industry in Ghana

For more information and registration, please contact Deborah at 0541555606, Alberta at 0244623012, or  click on the link to register: