GHANA – Premium Foods Limited, an agro-processing company in Ghana, operating under government’s One-District-One Factory initiative, has begun the export of Super Cereal, a specialised nutritious food, to Burkina Faso under the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).
Premium Foods, inaugurated by President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in June 2021, is supported by WFP through the Canadian government to process Super Cereal aimed to support WFP’s effort of fighting hunger and alleviating malnutrition in Burkina Faso.
Super Cereal, is a specialised nutritious food, a blend of cereals, wheat, soya, and sugar mixed with extra vitamins and minerals which improves nutrition.
Funding from the Canadian government enabled WFP to invest US$2.5 million in Premium Foods Limited, with the firm itself topping it up with working capital and CAPEX loans of US$25 million for processing of the special porridge.
In 2021, WFP placed a pilot order of 600 metric tonnes from Premium Foods, which served to test the factory’s systems, machinery, quality and all parameters spelt out by the organization, including delivery timeliness.
The second order of 1,800 metric tonnes estimated at US$350,000 was sent out for transportation to the neighbouring West African country on April 27, 2022.
According to the food-assistance branch of the United Nations, a total of 3.3 million Bukinabes are estimated to be facing acute food insecurity, with the COVID-19 pandemic contributing to a sharp spike in numbers.
Two provinces in the Sahel region – Oudalan and Soum – have been driven into the Emergency phase of food insecurity.
Some 3 percent of people in these northern areas are said to be experiencing catastrophic levels of acute food insecurity.
WFP’s Country Director to Ghana, Ms Barbara Clemence noted that WFP’s work in Ghana aligned with the government’s Beyond Aid vision for national economic self-reliance, which identified agriculture and agro-processing as key priorities and the United Nation’s development support for the country.
She indicated that WFP had embarked on transformative programmes that supported the government and people of Ghana to engage competitively with the rest of the world, by ensuring strong linkages to improve food security and nutrition of the most vulnerable.
Ms Sara Nicholls, Minister-Counsellor and Senior Director (Development Programme) of the Canadian High Commission, on her part said Canadian government had not regretted investing in Premium Foods Limited.
She said it was the desire of Canada to ensure agro processors in Ghana were able to access export markets and to develop an industrialised inclusive and resilient economy to impact on zero hunger.
Mr Tom Gambrah, Managing Director of Premium Foods, highlighted that though the Super Cereal was for WFP, the firm would soon hit the market with Maizoya, a porridge blend of wheat, soya and sugar for both children and adults in a bid to ensure food security in the country.