An EDAIF-ARIBRO project aimed at significantly reducing the reliance on imported day-old chicks for the poultry industry in Ghana, is contributing heavily to achieving President John Dramani Mahama’s 20 million broiler production target by the end of 2016.
The president, during his 2015 ‘State of the Nation’ address, noted that this target would reduce the importation of poultry by 40 percent by the end of 2016 and save the economy about $150million.
He said according to latest statistics, Ghana had achieved a drop of 30 percent in poultry imports from $208.7million to $149million – but the target would ensure further reduction in the current import figures.
Following the approval of an EDAIF grant of GH¢225,000, the CSIR-ARI Poultry Farm at Adenta – Frafraha scaled up its operations to meet industry demands.
The grant, which was used to acquire a Toyota pick-up, construct two large poultry houses, a hatchery with two huge incubators, plastic feeders and drinkers, and feed meal equipment among other things, has placed CSIR-ARI in the position to achieve its original objective of revitalizing the poultry industry by producing day-old chicks locally.
Currently, the ARIBRO project has the capacity to produce 30,000 chicks through its modern incubators and hatchery. It, however, produces 10,000 day-old chicks every week for onward distribution to all 10 regions in the country and for export purposes.
The two poultry houses are also able to host 3,000 parent broiler breeders and this, has contributed to the increased number of chicks hatched every week.
Between 2009 and 2014,one hundred and sixteen thousand (116,000 ) birds were hatched and sold to farmers in the country at subsidized prices.
This figure is expected to increase exponentially as operations at ARIBRO have improved.
Chief Research Scientist at Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) – Agricultural Research Institute (ARI), Dr Kwame Boamponsem, said during a visit to the facility, that before the EDAIF grant the Institute was only producing day-old chicks in very minimal quantities using a small age-old incubator.
However, since EDAIF’s intervention, ARIBRO has greatly increased its production capacity and commercialised its operations in a bid to reduce the importation of day-old chicks.
“The EDAIF facility has enabled CSIR-ARI to acquire a hatchery, breeding stock, feed meal equipment among others and these would enable us to produce broiler day-old chicks for the whole nation and for exports, ” he explained.
He further revealed that some local farmers had already begun patronising the services of the hatchery at the CSIR – ARI, to produce chicks for their farms.
He said,” the CSIR-ARI is now positioned to be able to attain a major part of the president’s 20 million poultry target by the end of 2016″.
Dr Boamponsem indicated that the EDAIF grant to the facility in 2009 and subsequent support endeavours, have put ARIBRO in good stead to achieve this goal.