An agro processor and farmer, Yaw Adu Poku says aside the lack of funding for agro-processors and aggregators, the nation’s deficiency when it comes to proper storage facilities for rice, is a major factor affecting the rice industry.
According to him, many farmers have lost their yields to harmattan and bad weather because they did not have a proper storage facility.
“Last year I lost about 1.8 million cedis, money that I did not have. But I lost it, because of the Harmattan. Why? I don’t have storage,” he lamented on Newsfile, Saturday.
Rice, unlike other cereals, is very sensitive to atmospheric temperature, thus its moisture level completely dries up when exposed to the Harmattan weather.
A situation, Ghanaian rice farmers have been unable to tackle due to their lack of a proper storage system.
Chief Executive Officer of the National Food Buffer Stock Limited, Hanan Abdul-Wahab, says government has completed seven warehouses under the 1D1F initiative to store excess grains.
He added that, two other warehouses are 95 per cent complete and will soon store excess grains.
However, Yaw Adu Poku says the warehouses will do nothing to preserve the moisture level in the paddy.
According to him, the rice must be kept in a controlled environment to preserve its quality and silos are built for such a purpose.
“Storage for rice is not a warehouse. Storage for rice is a silo, where there is a controlled environment,” he stated.