The Ghana National Poultry Farmers Association (GNPFA) is to undertake a nationwide biometric registration exercise of poultry farms and farmers to promote the poultry business.
The Association is to embark on the registration to enable it to collect reliable industry data to aid proper planning, to influence policy formulation, decision-making and implementation for the poultry sector.
“The current data we have on the poultry sector at the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) and the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies are unreliable, misleading and deceptive and this is what has necessitated the exercise”.
Mr Victor Oppong Adjei, the President of the Association, made this known in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) at Dormaa-Ahenkro, in the Dormaa Central Municipality of the Brong-Ahafo-Region.
He said the exercise was expected to cover areas such as GPS tracking location of poultry farms, farm capacity, stock quantity of layers and broilers and the quantity of maize used in producing feed mill.
Mr. Adjei explained that approval had been given by the MoFA for the start of the exercise, which had been awarded on contract to Agro Innova Company Limited, a Ghanaian company.
He said the exercise would be carried out in collaboration with the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies, who would play supervisory roles to ensure that standards are maintained in the industry.
“Every farm will have to register and the Association will direct how farm houses are built to check the spread of diseases, and with a click we can with the GPS locate the farms where a disease had broken out”, Mr. Adjei said.
On funding of the exercise, Mr. Adjei said the poultry farmers would be levied to that effect, whilst the Ghana Poultry Project had also promised to offer some support. Mr Moses Mallaghan, Head of Operations of Agro Innova Company Limited said the exercise would be preceded by a two week pilot project in either Kumasi or Dormaa-Ahenkro, after which it would be rolled out to capture all poultry farmers.
He said the exercise forms part of plans to revamp the poultry sector and the Association in the country. Mr Mallaghan noted that, the initial plan was to seek funding from a non-governmental organisation (NGO) for the exercise but it did not worked out, and therefore called on individual poultry farmers to show commitment by contributing towards the project.
“No amount of money from government or an NGO can assist if the Association is not revamped,” he stated. Mr. Mallaghan added that, they wanted to digitise the operation of the poultry business, so that operators could find data and be aware of developments in their farms at any given time.
He said Agro Innova was chosen for the project because the company runs a software which allows poultry farmers to enter data concerning their poultry activities to obtain whatever necessary information at all times.