April 30, 2016

Greater Accra Poultry Farmers Association (GAPFA)

Public-Private Partnership Finances Technology to Advance Poultry Industry

USAID-FinGAP smooths the way for joint funding of key feed analysis equipment for private farmers association

Production of quality poultry feed has long since changed from the late 1970’s when GAPFA (Greater Accra Poultry Farmers Association) churned out 800 kg per day of product on a small “nika-nika” machine, a basic corn mill meant for domestic use. Today’s modern feed mill can deliver up to five metric tons per hour to GAPFA’s 600+ members in the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Central, Eastern, Volta, and Western regions of Ghana and other poultry farmers across the country. However, lack of laboratory equipment to analyze raw materials for feed formulation and nutritional values of finished product caused delays in the production cycle and slowed turnaround time.

Tired of relying on national regulatory bodies and research institutions for test results often released two to three weeks after submission, GAPFA decided the association needed to acquire a Near Infra-Red (NIR) spectrometer to conduct in-house tests with instant results for quality assurance on inputs and outputs.

“The delays were affecting our operations and sales,” Victoria Norgbey, GAPFA’s Executive Secretary, said about the business which produces and sells an average of 24,000 metric tons of feed per year at competitive prices.

The USAID Financing Ghanaian Agriculture Project (USAID-FinGAP), founded to facilitate financing along the supply chains in maize, soy, and rice, intervened to support GAPFA in finding funding to acquire the $77,000 NIR spectrometer. Feed makes up 70-80% of the total cost of poultry production. With Ghana’s growing demand for eggs and ready-to-eat chicken, USAID-FinGAP recognized that supporting quality feed supply would stimulate demand from smallholder farmers for maize and soy, key ingredients in animal feed.

USAID-FinGAP introduced GAPFA to the Export Trade, Agricultural and Industrial Development Fund (EDAIF), an agency of the Ministry of Trade and Industry of the Government of Ghana, as a source of financing.

USAID-FinGAP also appointed and subsidized the fees of AB Intel Limited, a business advisory services (BAS) provider in the USAID-FinGAP network, to assist GAPFA in preparing a business plan to support its application to EDAIF to finance the equipment purchase.

The result was EDAIF agreeing to finance 80% of the equipment cost, with GAPFA providing the rest. The spectrometer, launched in March 2016, is capable of analyzing the composition and nutritional values of key raw materials such as maize, soy, and fish, showing moisture content, crude protein, fat, fiber, and other values. It is also able to determine the nutritional values of finished feed in a matter of seconds. Multivet Ghana Limited, representatives of Premier Nutrition, UK, supplied the spectrometer and trained GAPFA staff on its use and maintenance.

“GAPFA’s services save us time, cost, and the risk of formulating our own feed under unhygienic conditions,” Gifty Rudor of Logos Farms, a regular customer of GAPFA, said. “When the composition and nutritional values of feed are not in the right proportions, production of birds drops and egg sizes reduce, resulting in losses. Now we are assured that the quality of feed we buy from GAPFA meets international standards.”

With the commissioning of the NIR spectrometer, GAPFA, winner of the 2014 Best SME (small to medium enterprise) in Ghana Award, leads the way in modern technology in feed production for the poultry industry. The company is poised to increase its production by 75% in 2016 to meet the growing numbers of poultry farmers using their services.

“The grant from EDAIF forms part of the Government of Ghana’s continuous support and measures to revitalize the poultry industry. The procurement of the NIR equipment is a clear manifestation of the public-private partnership arrangement for the development of the poultry industry, with EDAIF as a public institution supporting GAPFA, a private sector investor.”

– Dr. Hanna Bisiw, Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture (livestock)